The Scoop

Could the Coronavirus Crisis leave our younger people scarred?

Not only do we have to cope with the uncertainty, loss and ill health of people we know, but with the coronavirus also comes the inevitable strain on the UK economy.

We can’t deny that in one way or another, it has affected everyone.

However, thousands of young people across the UK have been left to take the hit when it comes to their work and studies.

An analysis by the Resolution Foundation found that if the overall level of UK employment rises from 4% to 10%, youth unemployment could reach over one million this year; and with the youth being our future, there’s no doubt that this is a cause for concern.

An example:

A young person joins a company as an apprentice. The company also funds his/her studies. But they are then made redundant because of coronavirus. The years he/she has spent studying will go to waste if they cannot find an employer to continue the studies with. However, less people are hiring.

Because young people cannot get work, they therefore cannot gain experience. This puts them at a huge disadvantage as it means they are less likely to be favoured by many companies when applying for jobs.

Because of these sorts of situations, people are calling for a youth jobs guarantee. The aims of this would be to bridge the gap and offer work and training to young people facing long term unemployment, which means that they may have more experience and more of  a fairer advantage when job hunting.

The Government are trying to tackle this issue amongst young people, and are pledging to provide around 30,000 new traineeships for young people, starting in September 2020.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is set to say more about them, but there are talks of £1,000 being given to companies for every new work experience place they offer.

Figures from the Department for Education show that the number of traineeships has decreased from 24,100 in 205/16 to just 14,900 in 2018.

However, the Government scheme will hopefully mean that these numbers will be on the rise again, and that many young people aged around 16-24 will have the opportunity to get work experience from companies.

Young people have been urged to not let the current situation dishearten them or put them off- there scheme is promising if they take advantage of it.

The Treasury said three quarters of young people who completed a traineeship actually moved on to further study or employment within a year.

However, three quarters of people aged 18-24 would continue to be out of work or education for twelve months if they had originally been out of training or education for just three months.

It is important to remind young people of these statistics and encourage them to take opportunities when they arise. After all, our young people need experience. If not, the gap will only get bigger and career prospect for younger people will dwindle.

You may know by now that at PenLife we’re proud of helping our younger members of staff strive to reach their potential- if there’s a relevant course or training they are interested in, we will happily encourage and support them through it.

Our younger generation cannot be overlooked or forgotten about during this time.

They are the future of the companies that exist today, and of those that are yet to be founded.