Youth Unemployment in Argentina

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 In News

Youth unemployment is nowadays a serious problem all around the world. In some countries the amount of young people who do not have a job reaches more than 50%. And it is known that the percentage of youth unemployment is almost always higher than the percentage of unemployment in general.

Argentina does not escape from those circumstances. Even though the situation has improved in the last years, the amount of unemployed young people is still large. Depending on who tells the information, i.e. different studies from different places, the scale of the problem changes. On average, the total percentage of youth unemployment in Argentina is about 20%, whereas the general unemployment average varies between 7% and 8%.

Today, about 2.5 millions of young Argentine people do not have a job or, if they do, it is an informal one. The unemployed young people are divided into two groups: those who do not study and do not work, and those who try to have a job, but cannot have one.

It is more difficult to get a job when people are young than when they are middle aged because of two reasons: they do not have any previous experience; the employment contracts are rigid and, for example, impede them from studying while they keep working. It is quite paradoxical: if someone wants to gain experience in order to get a better job in the future, probably they will have to stop studying, which means less training and consequently worse work.

As regards youth unemployment, those who are in the most difficult situation, as in many other cases, are poor young people. They become the most vulnerable ones. This fact has to do with the inequality of life opportunities. In order to survive, they need to start working, which means leaving school, which results in less instruction and less knowledge, and all this leads to the impossibility of getting a really good job in the future.

And here we arrive at the problem behind the problem: education. A person who does not go to school will be less prepared to enter the job market than a person who studies and acquires new knowledge, since the employers will demand not only experience but also skills and training.

And then, we have the most serious problem: poverty. Someone who lives on the ground, who gets wet when it rains, who does not eat enough or healthily enough,   will not pay attention at school, in the case they have the chance to attend school. They will probably invest more effort in trying to find some kind of job that helps their family to survive, than going to school or college. Most of the time, this has nothing to do with what they want, but with what they need to do.

As we notice, youth unemployment is not a superficial problem and the solutions cannot be superficial either. It is a structural issue and it has to be solved by taking into account the distant future. We all have to get involved in this matter: governments,  organizations, schools and citizens. We must work together in order to achieve effective results.

During the whole process there is one thing we have to bear in mind: what young people need is tools that allow them to make their imagination, creativity, intelligence, strength and power work.

This article was written by Mercedes Mestres – who obviously enough is from Argentina!


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