Young people face a lifetime of unemployment

The Prince's Trust has said that thousands of jobless young people face a lifetime of unemployment. The longer young people are out of work, the further they drift from the labour market in terms of skills and information.

Professor John van Reenan, director of the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics, said youth unemployment could affect the whole economy. He said: "What happens is that young people who stay unemployed for a long period of time - it scars them." These young people then need special, targeted help. As the director of the charity Paul Brown said:
"We believe those young people need and deserve long-term support, otherwise we think we're on the brink of a long-term, youth jobs crisis. I've seen time after time, even young people who've been out of work for many years, turn their life around. That has to be worth it for them and for the economy as a whole."
That's why Brian Walker was so perfectly right when he said on Slugger O'Toole that "Obsessing over history and identity won’t educate our kids or bring them closer together." Politicians
Northern Ireland politicians need to stop obsessing over the past and start building towards the future. Upon the education of the young people of Northern Ireland the future of Northern Ireland depends. Politicians need to feel the fierce urgency of now. This is urgent. Speaking at a summit of youth unemployment in Europe to the Guardian the German Chancellor said:
"Youth unemployment is perhaps the most pressing problem facing Europe at the present time."
Angela Merkel also made an interesting note on how people look upon the various education paths. She said: "We should not just try to make our young people more academic. Germany is seeing the positive effects of skilled workers and master craftsmen having an excellent reputation too." The EU Youth Action Plan was launched jointly at the Northern-South ministerial council (see here), but little has been reported on its development.

Previous posts on youth unemployment here and here.

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