“Greater Manchester has always been the home of radical thinking and innovation. As the birthplace of the industrial revolution and political and social reform, and now a hub for our thriving digital and tech sectors, the spirit of the city-region hasn’t changed over the years. My goal as Mayor of Greater Manchester is to build a stronger, fairer and more resilient society, tackling regional inequalities and ensuring that economic growth and prosperity benefit everyone in our city-region.”
– Mayor Andy Burnham
Andy Burnham was elected as Mayor of Greater Manchester in May 2017. Responsible for shaping the future of Greater Manchester, Mayor Burnham’s priorities include ending rough sleeping, transforming Greater Manchester into one of the greenest city regions in Europe, and making Greater Manchester a great place to live, get on, and grow old.
Before being elected Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham was Member of Parliament for Leigh (UK) from 2001. In government, he has held Ministerial positions at the Home Office, Department of Health and the Treasury. In 2008 he became Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, before returning to Health as Secretary of State in 2009. In opposition, Andy served as Shadow Education Secretary, Shadow Health Secretary and Shadow Home Secretary.
In 2019, Greater Manchester and the UK Government agreed one of the country’s first modern local industrial strategies. The Greater Manchester Local Industrial Strategy outlines a set of long-term policy priorities to help guide industrial development and provides a joint plan for growth and good jobs for our Greater Manchester residents. The Strategy was co-designed with business, the community, the voluntary and social enterprise sector and citizens.
Following the launch of the strategy, Greater Manchester introduced the Good Employment Charter. The charter encourages and supports employers to provide good jobs for local people with opportunity to progress and to develop. The charter will help to drive up employment standards, improving employees’ welfare as well as businesses performance.
Mayor Burnham’s ambition is to create an integrated employment and skills eco-system that has the individual and employer at its heart, and better responds to the needs of residents and businesses.
Thanks to the Adult Education Budget, Greater Manchester has more control over how to support skills and employment locally, ensuring residents are equipped with the right skills and knowledge to succeed. Since August 2019 more than 29,000 residents have received support with their skills development. The funding is also ensuring that employers can access the skilled workforce needed for businesses across the city-region to grow and thrive.
Mayor Andy Burnham said: “Devolution is allowing us to move forward in Greater Manchester to deliver the best possible outcome for residents and businesses by creating a fully integrated and seamless lifelong learning experience that benefits everyone.”
Greater Manchester launched the first city-region Culture Strategy in 2019, centring around the lives of the people of Greater Manchester. The Strategy provides a joint and cohesive message about the city’s cultural ambition, building on its reputation for cultural innovation, but also boosting the economy and enriching the lives of residents.
To make culture more accessible for residents Mayor Burnham launched the Greater Manchester Town of Culture award in 2019. The award rewards towns across the city-region that are making a significant contribution to culture. The winning town receives £50,000 to develop a programme of exciting events and activities that celebrate the identity of that place.
To ensure citizen participation in Greater Manchester policy-making, the Mayor has established a number of panels and expert groups including the LGBT Adviser and Panel, Gender Equality, Social Cohesion Commission, Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise Accord, Social Enterprise Advisory Group, and the Greater Manchester Women and Girl’s Equality Panel.
Greater Manchester is the UK’s first age-friendly city-region as recognised by the World Health Organization. The city seeks to improve the lives of people aged 50 and over living in Greater Manchester. Working with partners, the city has set up the Greater Manchester Ageing Hub to coordinate a strategic response to the opportunities and challenges of an ageing population. The city also runs the Age-Friendly Challenge which rewards the most successful projects from the Greater Manchester community.
Greater Manchester’s “Youth Combined Authority” (GMYCA) is the first of its kind in the country and gives young people in the city the opportunity to have their voices heard. Since September 2019, more than 35,000 young people have benefited from “Our Pass”, a pass for 16-18-year-olds across Greater Manchester that gives them the freedom to travel, work and learn, as well as other benefits such as discounts and special offers.
To tackle homelessness, Greater Manchester aims to provide homeless individuals with a bed to sleep in every night in a shelter. Introduced by Mayor Burnham, “A Bed Every Night” provides regular short-term accommodation, a hot meal and personal support for every rough sleeper in the metropolitan area. Additionally, the Homelessness Fund supports frontline projects that support the objective to end rough sleeping and reduce homelessness.