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Youth Forum adopts resolution on youth autonomy & inclusion

April 20, 2016

The European Youth Forum, during its Council of Members which took place in Brussels this weekend, adopted a resolution on youth autonomy and inclusion, which calls for all young people’s social and economic rights to be realised.

The welfare system that lies at the heart of the European social model should protect the economic and social well-being of its citizens. Based on the principles of equality of opportunity and public responsibility for those who are denied an adequate standard of living, it should ensure that no one is left behind or left out at any stage in their life.

This, unfortunately, is currently not the case. Young people since the economic crisis have been denied access to their social rights. Social exclusion is rising, income inequality has increased by 4%, and the 
 intergenerational divide is still present. This has an impact on public finances and, therefore, on the sustainability of European welfare systems- a situation which will only get worse as Europe’s population ages.

The resolution therefore puts forward policy to ensure European welfare systems are adapted to the new realities of work and life in Europe today. It calls on governments and the European Union to ensure the right of all young people to free, quality education, workers’ 
rights, the right to social security and social protection, the right to healthcare and to housing. The calls include:

  • Adequate minimum income schemes that ensure everyone can live a decent life
  • Measures to combat youth homelessness as well as non-discriminatory housing support for all young people
  • Pension system reforms that are based on intergenerational solidarity
  • Fully paid parental leave and targeted measures supporting single-parent families
  • Universal free access to health care including measures to increase young people’s knowledge on mental health issues

The Resolution will contribute to the Consultation of the European Commission on the Pillar of Social Rights. The Youth Forum will publish a report in May 2016 (at the European Youth Event taking place in Strasbourg 20th – 21st May in Strasbourg) on the social inclusion of young people.

European Youth Forum AISBL

Rue de l’Industrie 10, 1000 Brussels

Tel.: +32 2 793 75 20
Fax : +32 2 893 25 80

With the support of
The European Commission
The European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe