Tuesday, April 2, 2013

For Immediate Publication

The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) has called for significant investment in the Youth Guarantee scheme as Eurostat figures show an unemployment rate of 30.8% among Ireland’s under 25s. This is an increase of 0.4% on January’s figures and comes despite the Government’s promise at the outset of its European Presidency to make youth employment a priority.

The Youth Guarantee scheme aims to provide employment, education or training for people under the age of 25 within four months of becoming unemployed. The scheme will receive some funding from the EU but its success will depend largely on Government investment. Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton has said that youth unemployment in the EU is an “existential crisis”.

Minister Burton has also stated:

“There will be those who say we can’t afford to implement the Youth Guarantee given the additional investment it will inevitably require. I say we can’t afford not to implement it.”

USI now calls on the Minister to act on her word and ensure that the scheme receives adequate investment in order to alleviate this growing crisis.

John Logue, President of the Union of Students in Ireland said:

“The Eurostat figures show that Ireland’s unemployment rate for under 25s is almost 7% worse than the European average. To combat the growing dangers associated with long term unemployment among young people, meaningful Government investment is required in a Youth Guarantee scheme that restores a sense of pride and hope in our young people.

Too many are standing in dole queues and too many are forced to emigrate when they would rather stay at home and contribute to the country’s recovery. An adequately resourced Youth Guarantee scheme would offer the employment, education and training that will help plug the generational drain. If the Government doesn’t back this scheme with meaningful investment then they risk losing the talent and energy that will drive our economy’s recovery.”

For more information contact USI Media and Communications Executive, Ronan Costello, on 085-1164263 or email