Here’s the link to a TVO The Agenda panel I was on this Friday.Â Good to put some focus on the fact that the “real” unemployment rate for young people is 20%, while the youth employment rate is down a full five percentage points from 2007.
My basic take is that it is not very surprising that youth unemployment and under employment are very high when we still have a very slack job market. Older displaced workers and seniors are grabbing what used to be considered entry level sales and service jobs, and employers generally put a large premium on experience which very much works against young people breaking into the job market.
As for solutions, I am struck by the very small scale of government interventions – just 1.5% of the 15-24 age group benefit from the job subsidies provided through the federal Youth Employment Strategy which help young people gain some work experience.
There is also some scope to create jobs for young peopleÂ if we expand spaces in those apprenticeship, college and university programs which lead to genuine employment opportunities. For example, few electricians or physiotherapists are unemployed, but there is a long waiting list to get into training programs.