Conclusions from EU Council Summit Endorses Speedy Action on Youth Unemployment
On the 27th and 28th June, the European Council held its first EU summit of 2013 with a special focus on youth unemployment. EU leaders agreed on a broad approach to combat the unprecedented 23 per cent youth unemployment rate in the EU. However, the agreed plan of action could have sent a stronger message on investing in its youth by excluding investments in job creation, education, training and research from deficit targets.
The plan includes speeding up the implementation of the Youth Employment Initiative and the Youth Guarantee scheme. The EU Council agreed to strengthen existing initiatives to help young people find employment across EU borders. This includes „Your first EURES Job” and „Erasmus +”. The Council would like to see these in operation in member states by January 2014. The EU leaders also plan to launch the European Alliance for Apprenticeships in July, and the Quality Framework for Traineeships early next year. The programmes are designed to link up the private sector, social partners and businesses to create high-quality apprenticeships. Yet, there was no agreement on ensuring the quality of work such as actions to fight precarious employment that young people disproportionately face.
The European Youth Forum welcomes and supports the call on member states to promote active labour market measures and to work on more effective vocational and education systems to facilitate the transition from school to work. However, the Youth Forum considers that the Council missed an opportunity to provide a whole strategy that includes concrete measures for creating job opportunities for young people. The Youth Forum hopes that member states and local authorities will engage with youth organisations in the implementation and monitoring of the Youth Guarantee schemes and the Forum will continue to work and support Youth organisations with this.
The European Youth Forum: Youth Guarantee Infographic – October 2012