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Long term effects of youth unemployment can’t be overlooked – Mitchell

18 August, 2016 - by Denise Mitchell TD

Sinn Féin Junior Spokesperson on Social Protection said that in any policy that looks at youth unemployment must take account of the lifelong effects a period of unemployment can have on young people.

Denise Mitchell TD for Dublin Bay North said:

“Ireland has one of the youngest populations in Europe with youth unemployment at 15.0% in May 2016. This is double the pre-economic crisis rate, and more than double the overall unemployment rate. There has been a decrease in mental wellbeing in Ireland since 2007 according to a Eurofound report and suicide rate for those aged 15-19 in Ireland is the 4th highest in the EU. Homelessness among 18-24 year olds was 642 in March 2016, a rise of 32% from March 2015.

“What is often overlooked are the long term effects of a period of unemployment for young people. Social Justice Ireland reported last month that many of the under 25s find it a challenge to return to work after a period of unemployment. A study by Paul Gregg and Emma Tominey of the University of Bristol reported in the Economist found that men who were jobless in their youth earn 13–21% less at age 42.

“When the Government is allocating monies in the upcoming budget, they must be conscious of the long term effects of any lack of an investment in the next generation. They must be conscious of the effects of long term unemployment and the effectiveness of current job activation schemes and whether they are truly gaining meaningful employment.”

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