Scotland’s construction industry unveils Covid-19 recovery plan

THE Scottish Construction Leadership Forum (CLF) has published a plan for the industry’s recovery from the impact of Covid-19.

The plan looks to work towards maximising support for employers and employees and establishing new ways of working to manage infection control, health and safety and shared learning opportunities.

Immediate, short and medium term initiatives include the development of a Scottish building framework; maximising support for employees and employers facing redundancies; ensure plans are in place for a second lockdown; measures that help apprentices into work; and develop an understanding of supply chain needs for long-term net-zero investment.

Long term aims include development of a competency framework which focuses on digital skills, meta-skills, management and leadership skills; the creation of an online national construction skills academy; and look at approaches to encourage direct employment.

The Scottish Government said that the plan as a whole will be flexible and able to respond to industry needs and economic conditions going forward.

Housing minister Kevin Stewart said, “This recovery plan has been developed through unprecedented levels of collaboration across industry and with Government. We will now also work with the sector to help implement the plan’s actions. There is no doubt that the Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on construction. It is absolutely vital for the economic recovery, and to protect jobs, that we get the sector back up to speed as quickly and as safely as possible.

“This plan sets out practical actions for how this can be achieved and we thank everyone who has taken part.”

Ken Gillespie, chair of Construction Scotland, said, “A huge amount of thought, energy and commitment from participants across Government and the Construction Industry has allowed us to prepare and publish this plan at pace and we are grateful to all those who have contributed. The hard work required to implement the plan and find the solutions to the challenges we face continues. We are indebted to the Minister for the leadership and support he has provided to the sector through this pandemic in his role as Chair of the CLF.”

Peter Reekie, chief executive of the Scottish Futures Trust, said, “Endorsement by Scottish Government shows testimony to the sector’s shared vision of an industry that promotes a safe, productive, profitable, innovative, sustainable and socially responsible construction industry, offering quality jobs and fair work to a highly skilled and diverse workforce and a quality and life-time value product to its customers.”