Since 2014, the Youth Guarantee has become recognised as a successful tool that has given a real opportunity to young Europeans to enter the job market, training or further education. The outstanding success of the programme, according to the European Commission assessment, has helped more than 14 million people, many of them from the most marginalised groups in our society.
This programme continues to be needed more than ever. The youth unemployment crisis is far from over. One in every five young Europeans remains unemployed, more than a third for more than 12 months. Additionally, while some of the effects of joblessness are well known, the project NEGOTIATE, in which SOLIDAR Foundation is involved, keeps discovering new and worrying long-term consequences that affect youngsters in a precarious situation.
After the initial funding ran out, SOLIDAR Foundation and other organisations from civil society took part in a major mobilisation for more funding for the scheme. Youth unemployment remains a pressing challenge for current and future generations as well as for the future of the European project that has no chance of surviving if it does not come with the promise of a better life.
SOLIDAR Foundation welcomes the decision of the European Parliament to extend the funding to allow the programme to operate throughout 2017. However, that financial boost of 500 million euros, agreed by MEPs last week in Strasbourg, is far from being sufficient to ensure a decent future. Continuous investment in the skills of young people is the only way to overcome the effects of the austerity measures imposed in previous years. We demand that the Youth Guarantee becomes a permanent feature of European employment policy with continued funding and comprehensive implementation guidelines for Member States.
SOLIDAR Foundation will fight alongside civil society and progressive policymakers to ensure a better future for the next generations of Europeans.
For more info about the state of play of the Youth Guarantee and the next steps, come and join the roundtable debate organised in European Parliament by Brando Benifei on 10 October 2017 at 17.30 in Room A3H1.