EESC's best practice on youth employment
Combating youth unemployment is one of the biggest challenges of our time.
In view of the EESC's role and its close monitoring of the situation, the Greek presidency has requested that the Committee put forward recommendations based on current practice in the Member States.
"For today's young people to be in a position to shape tomorrow's Europe, they need the opportunity to live an independent life, which includes a job in line with their qualifications", says rapporteur Christa Schweng, member of the Employers' Group).
Unemployment rates among 15-24 year-olds have always been higher than in the 24-65 age group, but the financial and economic crisis has hit young people looking for their first job particularly hard. While Eurostat1 data show that the youth unemployment rate stood at twice the unemployment rate of the total population up to the end of 2008, the rate was 2.6 times as high by the end of 2012.
The reasons for this are fewer jobs as a result of weak – or negative – growth, reduced domestic demand, cuts and an accompanying freeze in public sector recruitment.
The EESC has identified several measures that can help address youth unemployment, and has provided examples as recommended by EESC members:
The Committee also suggests that only a strategy geared towards growth and aimed at strengthening competitiveness and restoring the confidence of investors and households, accompanied by sustainable investment and an economic recovery plan, can stimulate demand for labour.
Voting: for 124, against 1, abstentions 4
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The European Economic and Social Committee represents the various economic and social components of organised civil society. It is an institutional consultative body established by the 1957 Treaty of Rome. Its consultative role enables its members, and hence the organisations they represent, to participate in the EU decision-making process. The Committee has 353 members from across Europe, who are appointed by the Council of the European Union.
COM(2012) 795 final.