Sicilian Region’s large professional training grant at risk of paralysis

The Sicilian Region is ready to allocate 80 million to the professional training sector. However, a large part of the course management entities will not be able to receive public funding because they have not complied with the new rules introduced with the January Finance Law.

The Department of Training sounded the red alert yesterday. The paralysis that the sector is facing is the result of two amendments approved quickly and without debate on the night the Finance Law was voted on, which are now having the expected boomerang effect. For this reason, the same assessor Mimmo Turano has committed to proposing a modification of these rules to the Regional Assembly in collaboration with the associations of entities and trade unions.

A step back. With the Finance Law, the ceiling on the funding that each entity can receive was removed and the obligation to hire four executives and administrators on a permanent basis at each location, including branches and peripheral ones, was introduced. The combination of these two measures is putting pressure on medium-small entities that see their funding limited (swallowed up by larger organizations) and are unable to comply with the obligation to hire permanently.

This was denounced on Thursday evening in a summit at the department by trade unions (Flc Cgil, Cisl Scuola, Uil Scuola, Confsal, and Ugl) and the associations of entities (Cenfop, FormaRe, Federterziario, Anfop, Asef, Forma Sicilia, and Confap).

The risk outlined to assessor Turano is that the funding for traditional courses that the Region is ready to provide may be immediately blocked. The ranking of the so-called Notice 7, worth 80 million, will be published in the coming days. But a large part of the entities – as denounced by trade unions and employer associations – has not complied with the hiring requirement and, not being in compliance with the new rules, will not be able to receive funds. This could trigger a chain reaction leading to the paralysis of the sector, or at least the part that concerns medium-small entities. The largest entities, which are four, are reportedly withstanding the impact of the new rules, while all the others have stated that they are unable to increase staff with limited funding.

For this reason, trade unions and entities have proposed to the assessor to eliminate the rule that removed the funding ceiling and to amend the hiring rule, limiting it only to entities receiving funds for the Ifp courses, the more modern ones linked to the world of school, and basing the number of employees to be hired on the actual amount of funding received. These courses have a three-year funding and would allow entities to “risk” a long-term maneuver such as permanent hiring. Furthermore, the proposal from trade unions and entities is to change the mandatory professional profiles to focus more on tutors and trainers rather than administrative staff.

Turano has shown that he shares the concerns of the trade unions and also the proposed modifications: “We are evaluating the best solution to modify the two rules. but I have already said that I will bring the amendments to the Regional Assembly as soon as possible. They will be presented as amendments to the first law that comes to the floor, whatever the topic may be.”

This position has received broad support, expressed yesterday both by the Lega member Vincenzo Figuccia and by the Democratic Party deputy Mario Giambona. This has given entities and trade unions a glimmer of hope: “The willingness of Turano to involve social parties in rewriting that rule, which if not amended, would cause the paralysis of the sector, is commendable. It is inconceivable that a strategic sector such as education and professional training, destined to train thousands of young Sicilians and employ just as many workers, be conditioned by the choice of a few,” concludes the note signed at the end of the meeting with the assessor.

Formazione professionale, a rischio paralisi il maxi bando della Regione Siciliana

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