New Youth Guarantee Plan to improve the employment situation of young people in Spain, one of the European countries most affected by youth unemployment. The Council of Ministers has approved the ‘Youth Guarantee Plan Plus 2021-2027 for decent work’, with which Spain will once again receive a large amount of EU funds. An estimated 3,263 million euros in this period. The Third Vice President of the Government and Minister of Labor, Yolanda Díaz, stressed that the new plan, agreed with the Autonomous Communities and worked with the social agents, will focus its attention on the “most worrying situation”, that of young people expelled from the labor market and unmotivated, who are part of the inactive population because they do not even trust to find a job.
Sánchez announces a youth employment plan with 1,300 million euros to avoid the “perpetual adolescence” that ensues
Spain is one of the European countries with the highest youth unemployment rate, of 36.43%, among young people aged 16 to 29 according to the document ‘Young people aged 16 to 29 in the EPA’, with data from the fourth quarter of 2020. This higher incidence of unemployment among young people makes Spain one of the largest beneficiaries of the Youth Guarantee launched by the EU in 2013 and which in the past has been criticized for being a poorly evaluated tool and that at times has financed labor formulas with little stability.
Given the pandemic, groups of young people have warned of the risk of repositioning themselves as the “losers” of a crisis, so they have asked measures to avoid a new “lost generation”.
Yolanda Díaz has been in charge of presenting the new Youth Guarantee strategy, the Youth Guarantee Plus. This joins the different measures presented by the President of the Government in the package ‘Youth Advance’, with which the Minister of Labor has highlighted that the Government of Spain will invest a total of almost 5,000 million euros – 4,950 million – in the next years. “I dare say that it is the largest budget item in history,” Yolanda Díaz stressed.
The Minister of Labor has insisted that the Youth Guarantee Plan Plus will continue to combat “precariousness”. “We cannot have young people with salaries of 436 euros per month and this is happening. This speaks badly of our country and speaks very badly of Spanish companies. If we have precarious work, we have precarious companies,” he said.
In this sense, the strategy contemplates that “the job opportunities that young people receive through the Youth Guarantee Plus are governed by a quality framework”, based on the prioritization of aid -direct or indirect- “to the promotion of stable hiring (indefinite or of at least one year duration), full-time and under the coverage of the collective agreement of the sector or of the main company “.
There will also be other hiring formulas but these will be related “to specific objectives, well justified and whose results can be, as in the rest of cases, adequately evaluated”, collects the document, which has been able to consult elDiario.es.
The UGT union has highlighted in a note that “a ‘Quality Framework’ be established for any job offer that arises from the Youth Guarantee”, which they hope will end “with that bad practice of the past of financing precarious contracts with public money. “UGT, which criticizes that the plan is not ultimately the result of a” tripartite agreement “with the social agents, regrets that the strategy has not” specified certain measures and further clarifies how the evaluation and monitoring of the same “.
The CCOO has also highlighted improvements to the new Youth Guarantee Plus, such as a more realistic image of the state of young people in the labor market and the intention to approve the Statute of non-labor practices to avoid abuses on trainees. However, the union also warns that this Statute was already promised in the past by the first government of Pedro Sánchez, without being approved, and they criticize the “enormous risk” of continuing to promote “entrepreneurship” as a way out for “many of the most vulnerable people in the world of work.”
Inactive youth, away from the labor market
Yolanda Díaz has highlighted, in addition to the commitment to quality employment, that the new Youth Guarantee will seek to focus its efforts on young people away from the job market, discouraged by encountering many obstacles to their job search and who end up being part of the inactive population. In the opinion of the vice president, it is the “most worrying situation”, in which the lack of opportunities leads to “discouragement” for many young people, especially the less qualified, “without looking for an alternative life.”
Díaz stressed that there will be “many measures” to alleviate this effect of discouragement and exclusion. The Plan states that “the advisability of increasing the accessibility of the plan and of granting greater dissemination of the Plan among inactive, low-qualified and more vulnerable young people has been noted.”
In order for the Youth Guarantee to reach this group, the Strategy aims to “carry out coordinated actions between social and youth services, as entities that work directly on these groups and their families, as well as with the Public Employment Services. “.
The Plan approved this Tuesday is based on three pillars: guidance, which Labor insists will be “personalized” in line with the new Active Employment Policies (PAE); training, which aims to be closer to local and business needs; and job placement itself, in which efforts will be focused on the “most vulnerable” young people and the aim is to improve the quality of contracts, as noted.
In order to speed up care and attract young people, the Government undertakes that “the people enrolled in the plan will have immediate attention”, with a “maximum period of four months “so that have received an offer of employment or training, “which will have a special monitoring in this period.”
The Executive also intends to set up “a free telephone line” to “resolve doubts about the service in addition to the availability of complementary digital systems.” Yolanda Díaz stressed that the initiatives will be “consistent” with the Recovery and Resilience Plan, as well as with the objectives set by the coalition government, to move towards a change in the production model. For example, through the requalification of young people towards the “green economy and the blue economy”, he pointed out.