Youth Guarantee putting young people in jobs

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The EU scheme to get young people into work or training within four months, the Youth Guarantee, is starting to reap rewards for young people across Europe. According to a report released today by the European Commission, 9 million young people have taken up an offer of a job or further training through the scheme. The European Youth Forum is happy to see the Youth Guarantee doing its job and calls for continued support for the scheme so that it can make more of a difference to the lives of all young people.

The Youth Guarantee is changing the way countries tackle youth unemployment. Today’s report shows that in many Member States it has triggered a rethink of traditional approaches to dealing with youth unemployment – through its emphasis on early intervention, individualisation and the importance of partnerships. Changing mentalities and approaches takes time and, three years into the Youth Guarantee, such change is taking hold.

The Youth Forum is pleased that the infrastructure for the Youth Guarantee is taking shape. Now is the time to use this infrastructure to really reach all young people, and ensure they have a good quality job, or training. 4.2 million young people (under 25) are still unemployed in the EU whilst 6.6 million young people are not in education, employment or training. But there are also many more that are at risk of poverty and social exclusion. The report highlights this as a gap in implementation so far, and echoes the recommendations of the Youth Forum when it comes to the inclusiveness of the scheme. Cooperation with youth organisations should be strengthened as this in particular can help reach those young people furthest away from the jobs market.

The report also highlights that EU funding in the form of the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) is instrumental in the scheme – with half of eligible Member States having committed almost the entirety of their YEI budgets on Youth Guarantee measures. It is clear that EU financial support makes a difference and must continue and the revision of the EU budget currently taking place is the opportunity to ensure this.

Johanna Nyman, President of the European Youth Forum, said:

The European Youth Forum has consistently pushed for a real EU-wide Youth Guarantee and we believe that it is now finally becoming a reality. But it is still not impacting all young people. For this reason, now is the time to come together, step up our efforts and continue to support the Youth Guarantee. We call on Member States to prioritise youth employment both politically and financially. Alongside investment in quality job creation and entrepreneurship, the EU must ensure that the Youth Guarantee becomes a key pillar of our European social model.”

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