“Youth unemployment – the crisis we cannot afford” – Miliband report 14th February 2012

acevo youth unemployment

On the 6th February, the ACEVO Commission on Youth Unemployment, chaired by David Miliband MP, released its recommendations. UKYP reacts with call for action for jobs, and better preparation for the world of work through schools and careers advice.

Last year ACEVO set up a task force in youth unemployment, chaired by David Miliband MP, gathering evidence and produicing a new report with recommendations.  In response UKYP, BYC  and the Young Mayor Network commissioned a survey of over 1100 (including 119 D/MYP’s) young people across the UK to find out how they feel about youth unemployment and their job prospects.

Members of Youth Parliament and Deputy Members of Youth Parliament (total sample 119) told UKYP:

●85% are optimistic that they will be in the position they want to be by end of 2012.

●61% are positive that they will achieve the job/career they want to in the future, compared to 12% who are pessimistic and 27% who don’t know.

●63% do not think that the Government’s economic policy is inclusive of young people.

●52% don’t believe the Government’s strategy to tackle youth unemployment will be successful, compared with 24% who don’t know and 24% who think it will be.

●51% believe local youth unemployment will worsen compared to 68% who think it will nationally.

●59% think that competition for university places will get worse.

●30% think that their personal finances will worsen compared to 29% who think that their family’s will; 28% believe that their personal finances will improve compared to 21% who think that their family’s will. 


BYC (who host UKYP) reacted to a number of the report recommendations (see the BYC Website for full story and BYC poll results).

● Ensuring more job opportunities are available to young people in 2012: by frontloading the Government’s ‘Youth Contract’ initiative and doubling the number of job subsidies available in 2012. 

“The UK Youth Parliament(UKYP) welcomes both the Government’s Youth Contract and this suggestion to increase its pace and size, as good first steps.”

● ‘First step’ – a part-time job guarantee for young people who have been on the work programme for a year without finding a job.

“Job guarantees are a promise many young people are sceptical about. Who is going to provide the guarantee and where can young people appeal to if it doesn’t happen?”

● Targeting young people earlier: A new national programme, Job Ready, to work with teenagers to prevent them becoming NEET in the first place. Providing localised education-to-career support for the non-university bound who are fast becoming the forgotten 50%.

“UKYP welcomes early intervention to prevent young people not being prepared or matched to the labour market and the key to this is the quality of careers advice -not just for the non-university bound young people, but for those who are undecided about whether to go university or not.”

● Youth Employment Zones: starting in the youth unemployment hotspots, local organisations should come together and pool resources to get young people into work, with Whitehall offering a turbo-boost in the form of extra freedom and flexibility in return for results.

UKYP’s work highlights growing inequalities between areas of the UK for young people – so targeted support to level the playing field is very welcome.”

● A new mentoring scheme for young people, by young people: where under-25s who have been in work for a year mentor others on their path to employment.

“As a youth-led charity UKYP supports mentoring, especially by other young people. This is a good example of young people also being part of the solution not the problem.”

“Taken as a whole these recommendations are welcome but we would add one additional recommendation: that young peoples’ leaders are also involved in a dialogue about youth unemployment to address their underlying anxieties. These and lack of good information affect their confidence and choices in a competitive jobs market. We want more of this advice and information available in schools – about local and national job markets, skills trends, and career opportunities – as a fundamental part of learning about the world of work.”

UK Youth Parliament MYP Lola Mustapha said…

“It is devastating that our generation is losing out on hopeful opportunities for employment as a result of the Government’s economic crisis. We deserve to also be given the right to grow, not only as young individuals but also as future leaders of society”

Read the briefing here.