Unemployed doesn’t mean not working

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A NEWS bulletin last month about the rise in unemployment quoted statistics that 1.04 million young people were unemployed.

Many people wonder why so many young people are unemployed? So I put these questions to the public in my own investigation.

One person told me: “When leaving school or college, young people aren’t always given enough support in moving forward.”

The increasing demand for careers advisors and lack of local jobs seem to have taken their toll and good grades don’t automatically mean a job you want – more often it’s a case of taking what’s available, if anything.

A Borders Youth Council study about youth unemployment found surprising results.

z 65 per cent of respondents expect youth unemployment to worsen across the UK in 2012.

z 51 per cent expect it to worsen in their area,

z 61 per cent think there will be an increase in competition for university places in 2012.

z 68 per cent felt that the government’s strategy for economic growth doesn’t include young people.

z 60 per cent of young people agree with the statement “I am optimistic that in the future I’ll have the job and career I want”.

z 60 per cent disagree that the government strategy will tackle youth unemployment.

z 44 per cent expect their family’s financial situation in 2012 to remain about the same.

z 22 per cent expect it to improve.

z 31 per cent expect it to worsen.

The Youth Campaign on Facebook offered me the opportunity to ask a wide range of people their thoughts on the situation and Janine Jeffrey from Newton St Boswells suggested: “Some young people literally can’t work, but then there are those who just cannot be bothered.”

That got me thinking! There are jobs that some young people can’t do because they need to be able to drive – who can afford to learn if they aren’t working? It’s a vicious circle at times.

Many people seem to perceive young people these days as unemployed due to laziness. This of course is not the case for the majority. I, among so many others, am unemployed due to unavoidable circumstances but remain active with volunteering while searching for employment, adding what I can to my CV.

I am an unemployed 19-year-old, so people could consider my opinions on youth unemployment biased, but I work hard as a volunteer in a number of projects. I am working on courses and doing placements, all the while actively searching for work in my local area.

I really hope to see the support offered to young people in the transition from youth to adulthood improve so that we can become successful and confident. We deserve a good start in life – the same as anyone else.

I believe a lot has to be changed within government in order for this to happen so in the meantime I will keep on applying for jobs and working as a volunteer.