Youth Guarantee piloted in ten areas across France
The French government recently announced the ten regions across France that will be trialling a new youth guarantee scheme. Currently youth unemployment in France stands at 26.2%, with a higher rate for females without a diploma. Added to this, a recent poll conducted by Deloitte found that 27% of graduates wanted to work outside of France, compared to 15% last year. This has resulted in the national government taking action in tackling youth unemployment.
The pilot schemes will target specific young people, such as those currently not in education or from poorer backgrounds. It is expected that around 10,000 young people will qualify for a stipend of €450 per month. In turn for actively looking for work through local initiatives, the grant is hoped to allow the recipients to gain a sense of financial autonomy. This is deemed to be extremely important for young people looking for work – not only a guaranteed income but also tailored support to help them get into employment.
The French government has stressed that the new scheme is not designed to replace any current benefits that young people receive. There is an emphasis that the youth guarantee is not seen to be an added layer to the welfare state but a social programme with a specific outcome. Furthermore decision makers also announced that they intend to pilot the scheme in another ten areas in 2014 – taking the total number of young people involved in the initiative to around 30,000.
The European Youth Forum welcomes the news that the French government will be piloting the youth guarantee. It is important the youth guarantee is used to help young people make the transition to quality employment and is seen more than a just a conditional social benefit for young people. As strong advocates of the youth guarantee, the Youth Forum has campaigned for national governments to adopt the scheme and to make a real investment in youth people's employability and employment prospects.