Press Release

MEPs and European Youth Forum call on EU to Invest in Youth

03. 05. 2016

The European Youth Forum has today called on the European Union to invest in its future and to invest in youth. In an event at the European Parliament, “the Youth Voice in the EU Budget”, hosted jointly with the Youth Intergroup, youth organisations and young people made clear to decision makers the importance of prioritising young people in the upcoming debate on the EU budget. 

According to the European Youth Forum, in the current Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020 (MFF), €2 is spent per young person per year, and the budget for education, training and youth accounts only for 0.8% of the EU budget. Meanwhile, at the national level many youth organisations have seen cuts in government funding and face increasing difficulties in carrying out their work. At the same time the work carried out by these organisations is more and more needed as young people face huge difficulties in accessing the jobs market and as inequalities continue to rise.

In the negotiations ahead of the review of the MFF, the European Youth Forum is calling for young people to have a voice in the debate. The Youth Forum also calls for the EU to invest particularly in programmes including: Erasmus+, Youth Employment Initiative and Europe for Citizens. 

Luis Alvarado Martinez, Vice President of the European Youth Forum, said:

“Time and time again we hear from politicians that young people are their priority. We are starting to become a bit sceptical about this claim, as they continue to neglect to invest in youth! Young people face inequality, are blocked from the labour market and from accessing good quality jobs and the youth organisations, which can help them and act as a kind of “social glue”, are being sidelined. We call therefore on the European Union to put its money where its mouth is and turn promises into action, measures and programmes that are tangible for young people. We are looking forward to working with allies in the European Parliament in order to help make this a reality.”

MEP Eider Gardiazabal, co-chair of the European Parliament Youth Intergroup said:

''As Youth Intergroup we believe it is crucial to give young people a voice in the most important political discussions in the EU. With this event we wanted to discuss directly with young people and youth organisations on equal footing about how to spend the EU money in the most beneficial way for youth. I will take the suggestions on board in the upcoming discussion on the review of the MFF in the European Parliament. Investment in youth is more needed today than ever. Europe can't afford to lose its young generation.''

ends –

Notes for editors

About the European Youth Forum

The European Youth Forum is the platform of youth organisations in Europe. Independent, democratic, youth-led, it represents 102 National Youth Councils and international youth organisations from across the continent. The Forum works to empower young people to participate actively in society to improve their own lives, by representing and advocating their needs and interests and those of their organisations towards the European Union, the Council of Europe and the United Nations. For more information, visit www.youthforum.org

DATE: 3 May 2016, for immediate release.

MEDIA CONTACTS: Sarah Farndale, communications coordinator at the European Youth Forum (e: sarah.farndale@youthforum.org / tel: +32 496396765)

 

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