Youth unemployment crisis needs urgent attentionListen /
Europe must act urgently to bring back youth who have dropped out of the labour market.
Addressing the International Labour Conference in Geneva, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy painted a bleak picture of the youth employment situation.
“Every day, talented, motivated, energetic young people keep knocking on doors. In most of our countries, the situation of youth unemployment is severe. In certain countries, it is simply dramatic.”
He said it is particularly important to address the issue of so-called NEETS – those not in Education, Employment or Training.
“The earlier you catch those who drop out of the system, the more damage you can prevent. So we must act as early as possible to bring back NEETS into a situation with perspectives."
This, he said, is the idea behind the Youth Guarantee which EU countries have committed to and which would ensure that all young people should receive an offer of employment, education or training within four months of leaving school or becoming unemployed.
“This will no doubt require efforts both at the supply and at the demand side of labour market policies – better target training options and also making it easier for companies to hire young people. The time is now for full mobilization to turn that commitment into reality as quickly as possible.”
Patrick Moser reporting from the ILO in Geneva