Youth joblessness twice the 2008 rate

Youth unemployment is still double the rate it was at the start of the recession, it has emerged.

The latest EU Labour Force Survey shows Ireland is one of 10 European countries where youth unemployment is twice what it was in 2008.

It found Ireland was among two thirds of the European countries last year where youth unemployment rates exceeded 20%.

The other countries were Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, and Spain.

It also shows that, at 15%, Ireland’s share of youth who were not in employment, education, or training last year was one of the highest in the EU.

At 22%, Italy had the highest share, followed by Bulgaria at 20%, Croatia at 19%, and Cyprus, Romania, and Spain at 17%.

The National Youth Council of Ireland has called on the Government to tackle youth unemployment in next Tuesday’s budget.

The council wants the Government to restore the adult rate of €188 per week for all young people participating in education, training and work experience programmes.

Council deputy director James Doorley said the restoration of the payment that had been reduced to €160 for a number of training programmes would help the Government to meet its commitments under the Youth Guarantee Scheme.

The scheme is designed to ensure that any young person unemployed for four months or more is given a quality education, training or work experience place.

“While the overall number of young people unemployed continues to decline, there is still a significant number, largely victims of the recession, who are long-term unemployed,” said Mr Doorley.

Tánaiste Joan Burton told the Dáil this week that 18,383 people have been on the live register for a year or more.

At the end of August 41,246 people under the age of 25 were receiving Jobseeker’s Allowance.

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