Nick Clegg launches Youth Contract for unemployed young people

More than a million young people, aged 16 to 24, are unemployed. That does not include students. Every single person included in that number is not in employment, not in education, and not in training either – the so-called NEETs.

That is a shocking figure, and as well as having a profound impact on the lives of each of those young people, it also affects the rest of us.

As Nick Clegg says, “Sitting at home with nothing to do when you’re so young can knock the stuffing out of you for years. It is a tragedy for the young people involved – a ticking time bomb for the economy and our society as a whole.”

“This problem isn’t new, but in the current economic climate we urgently need to step up efforts to ensure some of our most troubled teenagers have the skills, confidence and opportunities to succeed.”

Today he has launched a £126 million scheme that is targeted at the 16 and 17 year olds. Employers will be offered up to £2,200 for taking on a young person, with more cash to follow if they make progress.

This scheme will help 55,000 young people, and hopefully provide them with some direction to their lives.

* Mary Reid is the Monday Editor on Lib Dem Voice.

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  • These work programs or “work fare” whatever the “current” government are trying to fob us off with are yet another throw back to the Tory administration in the early 90’s and the YTS Scheme

    The scheme was exploited by employers who took on “trainees” on a full time basis for the bargain price of £30 a week. Then laid them off after a year, only take on a new “trainee” and start the whole cheap Labour all over again.
    Leaving many young people, disillusioned after just spending an entire with a company only to be thrown on the scrap heap. Granted there were “some” people who benefited from YTS from employers who were genuine, however this minority was far outweighed by those who were used and exploited

    YTS turned into “New Deal” where employers were “paid” to take on people from the dole into “training” programs. which was yet another farce and allowed the likes of A4e to make huge profits at the tax payers expense for very little returns.

    I seem to recall Cameron soon after entering office, meeting with executives from the FTSE 100 with regards to unemployment. These companies whinged and whined and said that the government need to cut red tape and employment laws in order for them to take confidence and employee more people. They sign up to some shoddy back room deal with the promise to employ so many hundreds of thousand new employee’s between them over the next four years.

    And what happens?

    Employment law’s are being savaged, and these huge companies that made these promises are now signing up to take thousands of young unemployed people on” unpaid” work experience for weeks at a time.

    Please someone explain how this is going to help youth unemployment and further more, explain how this Tory led government with Nick Clegg at it’s side hasn’t just shafted the electorate once more in favor of corporate business

  • Simon McGrath 21st Feb '12 - 10:20pm

    One point – it does include students who are looking for a job. the CIPD have done some good work on this – they are around one quarter of the total

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