1 October 2013
Italy is back in the international media spotlight this week after political uncertainty once again plagues the Eurozone’s third largest economy.
All the while Italian youth unemployment has risen above 40%, according to new data published today by Eurostat, the EU’s statistical body. More and more young Italians are out of work figures from last August show, with a rise from 36.4% in 2012 to 40.1% in 2013.
For Giovani Italiani Bruxelles or ‘Young Italians Brussels’ – an independent campaign group set up by young Italians in the EU capital focussing on youth policies- there is no excuse for any representatives in Italian politics to overlook the pressing issue of youth unemployment. This is one of the real problems of Italy, and any government or political force in the country must address this as soon as possible.
Please find our Open Letter to the Italian government below.
The nightmare of youth unemployment is already a reality in Italy. The numbers speak for themselves: in Italy more than one in three young people are unemployed. Youth emigration increased by 30% in 2012 alone.
Emigrating is becoming an obligation, no longer a choice.
The lack of job opportunities and meritocracy is pushing an entire generation abroad.
Those of us that have already left ask ourselves simply “When can we go home?”
We were told to study hard in order to find a good job. Yet we grew up during times when education and research were the first areas to be cut.
In recent years we have witnessed scandals, corruption and clientelism from both sides of the political spectrum. This has taken away from our country its most important resource: a belief in the future.
Trust is not only built through words and promises. Above all, it comes with actions. For this we need concrete policies, with urgent measures and a long-term strategy for youth employment in Italy.
Youth policies need to return to the political agenda as an instrument to make our country more competitive.
Young Italians need to believe in politics once again.
We ask you to concentrate on five key actions: invest in education and research, promote access to the job market, favor the hiring of young people, simplifying access to credit, and reform of voting laws for Italians that are temporarily living abroad.
The European Union needs to return to be seen as a resource for its citizens.
The Youth Guarantee measure that was approved by the European Council, calls for all young people under 25 to have the right to an adequate job offer, training or an internship within four months from the end of their studies. The allocation of European funds for the Guarantee has already been approved. Italy must not waste these funds, as has often been the case in the past, but use them in the best way possible.
Our government has a real opportunity to put its money where its mouth is for young people at EU level.
At stake is €6 billion in funding for the Youth Guarantee scheme and call on the government support the measure.
Now more than ever, we hope that the Italian Government and all political forces give priority to our generation.
A generation rich in talent and eager to achieve its full potential.
We believe in the potential of our country and want it to once again to believe in itself.
We want to work together, Government and young people, to reconstruct our future and that of Italy.
An investment in young people is an investment in the future of the country. Young people are the real ” Guarantee” for the future.
Download the open letter in PDF here