Britain is faced with 21 percent youth unemployment, nearly 1 million people, which threatens the youth with poverty.
More than 650,000 young people are classified as NEETs (not in education, employment, or training), or 9 percent of the total. The number of under-25s in work has fallen rapidly since 2008, reaching 49.9 percent in recent months, the lowest figure since records began in 1992, World Socialist Web Site reported.
Long-term unemployment is also rising. The number of workers aged 18 to 24 and unemployed for over two years trebled since the start of the recession to 115,000—the highest figure since July 1994, according to government figures. A third of those unemployed, a quarter-million youth, have been jobless for more than a year. The Princes’ Trust youth charity said the number of long-term unemployed youth seeking their help has risen by at least a third since 2010.
The jobs situation is more difficult for youth than older workers. The unemployment rate for under-25s is 3.7 times higher than for adults and has increased over the past year, according to a study by the Institute for Public Policy Research.
Current levels of youth unemployment are predicted to cause widespread poverty in old age, as most youth can’t afford retirement savings, according to a study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
They also attribute this to the undermining of state pensions. Successive governments have promoted private saving schemes with monthly contributions that are neglected during periods of unemployment, creating pension shortfalls. Some are linked to the stock market, placing pensions in further jeopardy.
This threatens youth with poverty. The report notes that “pension reforms made during the past two decades lowered the pension promise for workers who enter the labour market today. Working longer may help to make up part of the reductions, but every year of contribution toward future pensions generally results in lower benefits than before the reforms.