Youth Unemployment High on Agenda

  • Deborah Morris
Youth Affairs

Hon Deborah Morris today acknowledged concern at the high rate of unemployment among young people and said that youth unemployment was high on her Ministry's agenda.

The Ministry of Youth Affairs will be promoting a youth focus to the policy guidelines for the new Department of Work and Income.

"It is vital that young people are a priority in the new Department to ensure that its services are relevant to their needs. It is really important that we look at the experiences of young people if we are to target the skills that are required for the kind of work that young people are seeking. Obviously this also needs to occur alongside an analysis of education and training needs."

"Because qualifications are the key to the future, the Ministry of Youth Affairs are looking at policy changes needed to increase the choices and responsiveness of senior secondary schools."

"The Ministry of Youth Affairs will report to me in September on the changing nature of young people's participation in the labour force. Their work will focus on identifying the underlying causes of youth unemployment with particular emphasis on Maori and Pacific Island young people."

"In addition the Ministry of Youth Affairs continues to monitor the impact of the minimum wage policies and will be reporting back to Government again at the end of the year."

"Ultimately every Government agency must ensure that young people's needs are met. The work of the Ministry of Youth Affairs aims to assist them in this and also to enable more young people to participate in learning and work," concluded Deborah Morris.