Work experience for the young unemployed must be meaningful and fair
Sinn Féin’s Fra McCann has spoken out against attempts by the British government to compel young people to work unwaged under the threat of destitution.
The West Belfast MLA was speaking after regulations were brought for consideration before the Social Development Committee, of which he is a member.
As part of the Tory-led government’s Welfare Reform legislation, the statutory rule under scrutiny is a part of the pending Work Experience Programme which will be targeted at young people aged 16 to 24.
“This programme has proven to be highly controversial in Britain and could even be in breach of the Human Rights Act,” says Fra McCann.
“Work experience for the young unemployed must be meaningful and fair. The current global economic crisis has hit the prospects of young people particularly harshly here, with joblessness amongst the 18 to 24 group reaching a 15 year high. Young people had no hand in creating this crisis and should be treated with respect."