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The local service economy (?Lokale Diensteneconomie?)

Country of implementation
Belgium
General short description of the innovation
Local service economy initiatives provide sustainable employment for long-term unemployed persons but additionally offer quality services to the local community and households. This way, labour market policy objectives are grouped with other social policy objectives. An important condition is that these services are complementary to services offered by private organizations. The subsidies for local service economy initiatives are organized in a model of cloverleaf financing: the Federal, Flemish and local authorities all contribute to the financing. Activity domains of local service economy initiatives include assistance and implementation of packages for rational energy use, running bicycle shelters, cleaning services, shopping assistance for the elderly, etc.
Target group
Total Populaton
Policy Field
    Type of Policy
    • public
    Duration of the policy
    These initiatives were formalized into the Decree on the Local Service Economy in 2006. However, before 2006, these initiatives were grouped within the ?Buurt- en nabijheidsdiensten?, which started up in the nineties. The policy is ongoing, but will be restructured with the new Decree on the Local Service Economy that was approved at the end of 2013, and will start mid-2014.
    Scope of innovation
    • Scope: Structural
    • Number of intended beneficiaries: In 2012, the Local Service Economy employed 2093 persons (http://www.werk.be/).
    • Spatial coverage: regional - Flanders
    General description of (intended) objectives and strategies
    Linking the fulfilling of local needs (e.g. childcare, care for older people at home, social restaurant ?) to local (extra) employment for people who are far from the labour market (people who are low educated and unemployed for at least one year, people on welfare benefits). Offering a range of services that is complementary to those services who are offered by private organizations.
    Nature of the innovation-long-term perspective
    offering social services and thus fulfilling social local needs, combined with the sustainable employment of target group workers.
    Type of innovation
    • new policy, practice or measure
    New outputs
    • job guidance, coaching and/or counselling
    • services
    Intended target group
    Sustainable employment of people who are: / - Long term unemployed: at least one year unemployed or eligible for welfare benefits / - Low skilled / Providing in services for the local community and households. These services are mostly aimed at vulnerable groups in society. /
    Working age population
    • educational level (low/medium/high) (offering employment for low skilled unemployed)
    • employment situation (offering employment for the long term unemployed (at least one year))
    • income level (low/medium/high) (providing services mostly to people earning low wages, although services are open for everybody)
    • main source of income: social protection (unemployment benefits or social assistance)
    Employers-private institutional actors
    non-profit organizations
    Actors involved in policy-making/implementation and/or evaluation
    • municipal government (local governments)
    • regional government (Flemish government)
    Intended output
    • job guidance, coaching and counselling (The employees receive counselling and training, aimed at a sustainable employment in het LDE-initiative, or a transition towards the Normal Economic Circuit (NEC).)
    • services
    Did the innovation have any outcome related to job quantity?
    Since these enterprises offer employment for long-term unemployed, this should have an impact on the overall employment rate on a small scale, however, there are no data availableLocal service/ labour demands that were not met by private organizations should be met by this initiativeSince these enterprises offer employment for long-term unemployed, this should have an impact on the overall long-term employment rate on a small scale, however, there are no data availableSince these enterprises offer employment for long-term unemployed, this should have an impact on the overall unemployment rate on a small scale, however, there are no data available
    Intended and unintended outcomes
    In 2012, 2093 persons were employed in a local service economy initiative, in 2011 1967 persons were employed.
    Clarification of outcomes in terms of impacting resilience and labour market inclusion
    The goal is to create local (extra) employment for people who are far from the labour market (people who are low educated and unemployed for at least one year, people on welfare benefits). It is targeted towards the most vulnerable groups on the labour market
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