Youth unemployment is a global crisis

In the Globe and Mail this morning Konrad Yakabuski  sums up details of the global youth unemployment crisis:

While Europe is the epicentre of youth unemployment, the crisis is a global one. In Canada, more than 411,000 young people under 25 were out of work in April, pushing the youth unemployment rate up to 14.5 per cent. Among Canadians between the ages of 25 and 54, the jobless rate stood at 5.8 per cent.

An even grimmer figure is the 904,000 Canadians under 30 found by Statistics Canada not to be in employment, education or training in 2011. Last week, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development pegged the number of these so-called NEETs at 22 million in the developed world. It called for member countries to do something fast – otherwise, these discouraged young people could become permanently unemployable.

The International Labour Organization issued a similar clarion call last month in a report titled A Generation At Risk. With 73 million unemployed young people around the globe, and another 200 million or so NEETs, the ILO warned that the “scarring” caused by the underutilization of young talent will have lasting economic and political consequences.

“Perhaps the most important scarring is in terms of the current youth generation’s distrust in the socio-economic and political systems,” the organization noted.

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