The current level of youth unemployment is not only a national disgrace, but also potentially disabling for other areas of society; particularly the education system where young people are taught to play by the rules and work hard to ensure a prosperous future -only to find that their qualifications buy them less and less.
We should call for the EMA to be reintroduced and for cuts in university places to be reversed; but as your editorial (13/10/11) also recognises, solutions to youth unemployment will primarily be the result of changing economic policies
Rising youth unemployment, while seriously exacerbated by the recession is the result of longer term structural changes to the economy. The future jobs fund was a small step in the right direction and a recognition that, rather than leaving young people to fend for themselves, jobs had to be created.
We could be much bolder however, using local authorities to create employment opportunities, ensuring that all those who complete apprenticeships are guaranteed a job and demanding that employers incorporate quotas for young people in recruitment policies. Without a more general ‘plan B’ for the economy though; the fortunes of young people stand little chance of improving.