1000 Opportunities Campaign: Avoiding crisis levels of youth unemployment

The Youth Employment Group is calling on policymakers to act now to prevent record levels of unemployed young people after furlough ends.

Government must act now to avoid a record number of young people ending up out of education, employment or training from October.

Youth employment experts from the The Youth Employment Group (YEG) estimate that 1000 extra employment, training or education opportunities are needed each day to bring the number of young people not in education employment or training back to pre-crisis levels by October 2021.

Young people will be hit hard when the furlough scheme ends.

Young people are being worst hit by the crisis in the jobs market and they will continue to struggle as the furlough scheme draws to a close, redundancies rise and competition for jobs increases. The most recent labour market statistics show that youth unemployment is likely to follow the trends of previous recessions, meaning the number of young people not working or in education could increase by 50%, reaching a total of 1.1 million. To bring the figure to pre-crisis levels by October 2021, government must drive the creation of 1000 opportunities every day.*

The YEG brings together over 150 key leaders and experts in the youth employment sector, and was formed by Impetus, Youth Futures Foundation, Youth Employment UK, the Institute for Employment Studies and The Prince’s Trust to help drive the UK’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The YEG has shared recommendations from its working groups with government, calling for clear objectives to monitor progress in supporting young people during the economic crisis and beyond.

Young people in crisis need further funding for education, employment and training.

The Co-Chairs of the Youth Employment Group commented:

There is much to welcome in recent announcements targeted at young people, such as the launch of the Kickstart Scheme. But these alone will not provide enough opportunities to return the number of young people out of work or education to pre-crisis levels.

Crucially, without clear cross-government objectives and measurement, it will be impossible to know whether the government’s initiatives are having their intended impact. And, as the government prepares its next Budget and Spending Review, it is clear that young people will need further funding for education, employment and training to face the scale of this crisis.

Samantha Windett (Director of Policy, Impetus), Tony Wilson (Director, Institute for Employment Studies), Richard Rigby (Head of Policy and Public Affairs, The Prince’s Trust), Laura-Jane Rawlings (Chief Executive Officer, Youth Employment UK), Anna Smee (Chief Executive Officer, Youth Futures Foundation).

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For more information, please email info@youthemployment.org.uk or call 01536 513388.

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