Tuesday, September 04 09:54:16
The full implications of the current rate of unemployment in Europe will take years to manifest in our societies. More than 5.5 million young people across Europe are unemployed, the European Commission reports, part of what scholars are dubbing a lost generation. The youth unemployment rate in Greece and Spain has climbed to a staggering 53 percent. That rate is 36 percent in Portugal, 34 percent in Italy and 23 percent in France, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. That compares with 15 percent in the United States. Globally, one in eight people under the age of 25 is unemployed.
In the euro zone, the unemployment rate is 26 percent - the highest since the creation of the common currency. In a report in July, the OECD, a group made up of 34 democratic countries, warned that youths are bearing the burden of the economic crisis in Europe. While many of these young people have their families to fall back on and can often live at home for free, the OECD warned of the lifetime damage - or "scarring effect" - that comes with derailing career plans and earnings potential at such an early age.
And the problem isn't confined to those who lack education or skills. Even those with college degrees are finding themselves stuck without work or in temporary, dead-end jobs. The situation is chipping away at the foundation of European societies. The high unemployment rate has been linked to rising crime among young people and a higher incidence of depression. Joblessness is bringing down birth rates as these young people must put off starting families until prospects improve. ( C ) Reuters