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The young generation sacrificed: social, economic and political implications of the financial crisis

Doc. 12951: collection of written amendments | Doc. 12951 | Final version

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ADraft Resolution

1Young people are a key asset for Europe. Conditions must be created for them to participate fully in decision-making, democratic processes and the shaping of a more cohesive, prosperous and just society. Yet the financial and economic crises, together with underlying structural problems, threaten the effective exercise of rights by the young generation, whose autonomy, dignity and well-being are severely affected by growing economic and social inequalities. In some countries, the enormous public debt, financial speculation and the global economic crisis force the young generation to make painful sacrifices.
2The Parliamentary Assembly denounces the very serious discrimination against young people and is deeply concerned by the fact that the young generation in Europe is disproportionally hit by the unemployment/underemployment-poverty-exclusion trap. This is nothing less than a tragedy in the making. If no tangible improvements are made, Europe risks not only producing a “lost generation” of disillusioned young people, but also undermining its political stability and social cohesion, justice and peace, as well as its long-term competitiveness and development prospects in the global context.

In the draft resolution, paragraph 2, delete the words "denounces the very serious discrimination against young people and".

3Whereas aging Europe needs the dynamism of young people to advance and prosper, policy makers have a duty to act rapidly and decisively to help deliver real opportunities for young people – or face the backlash of rising extremism and alienation in society. The Assembly is convinced that Europe needs to reactivate intergenerational solidarity mechanisms and better share political, social and economic power with the young generation. Adequately supporting young people today, even in times of austerity, is the best investment Europe can make in its future vitality and quality growth.

In the draft resolution, paragraph 3, replace the words "Whereas ageing Europe needs the dynamism of young people to advance and prosper, policy makers have a duty" with the following words: "Europe is aging and needs the dynamism of young people to advance and prosper. Therefore policy makers have a duty".

4Regarding the major youth employment challenge, the Assembly reiterates the proposals contained in its
5The Assembly refers to the valuable research work done by its partner institutions regarding strategies and tools for improving the integration of young people into labour markets and fostering progress in society. It is in particular convinced of the utility of putting into practice the proposals of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), as outlined in OECD employment outlooks and studies on Jobs for Youth and on Challenges Facing European Labour Markets, and recommends their implementation.
6Moreover, the Assembly urges the Council of Europe member States:
6.1regarding youth policies, to:
6.1.1focus youth strategies and action plans on better integration of young people into society through active citizenship, social dialogue and sustainable employment opportunities;
6.1.2ensure that young people have full access to all their human (including social) rights;

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.1.2, insert the following paragraph:

"ensure adequate remuneration and working conditions for young workers;"

6.1.3ensure that youth policies are put high on the political agenda and receive adequate funding;
6.1.4reallocate part of unspent budgetary balances and supplementary resources generated through adjustments in taxation to youth-oriented projects, programmes and organisations;
6.1.5implement family-friendly policies in support of young parents and the proposals contained in the
6.1.6foster the implementation of proposals laid out in

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.1.6, insert the following paragraph:

"promote the emancipation of young people by developing housing policies specifically addressed to this age group;"

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.1.6, insert the following paragraph:

"favour a debate on national electoral systems thus allowing young people to vote at the age of 16;"

6.2regarding youth employability and skills, as well as the transition from studies to work and between jobs, to:
6.2.1refocus their macroeconomic policies on sustainable job creation and investment in quality education, training and lifelong learning schemes;
6.2.2adjust their educational systems towards equipping young people with a wider array of skills and linguistic abilities to better qualify for the evolving needs of labour markets and multiple vacant jobs across Europe;
6.2.3improve youth access to high quality education, which can be better achieved by greater competitiveness of schools in both the public and private sectors;
6.2.4remove administrative and tax obstacles to youth mobility for studies, training and work, and stimulate this mobility;
6.2.5give impetus to youth entrepreneurship through an enabling environment, advisory services, tax facilities, grants and microcredits especially designed for young people;

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.2.5, insert the following paragraph:

“facilitate young people's access to development programmes, patentability and employment in the green economy, health, innovation and information technology sectors;”

6.2.6use the United Nations International Year of Cooperatives 2012 to encourage the creation and development of youth co-operative enterprises;
6.2.7improve the Europe-wide recognition of professional qualifications and non-formal education;
6.2.8offer tax incentives for employers who propose apprenticeships to young people while retaining older workers, notably for the inter-generational transmission of skills in the workplace;

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.2.8, insert the following paragraph:

"subsidise employers' contributions to social insurance schemes or even grant a moratorium on them for a limited period of time so as to stimulate the recruitment of young people;"

6.2.9endorse and promote the implementation of the European Quality Charter on Internships and Apprenticeships in the national context;

25 June 2012

Tabled by Mr Ramón JÁUREGUI, Mr José Antonio ALONSO, Mr Antonio GUTIÉRREZ, Ms Meritxell BATET, Mr Arcadio DÍAZ TEJERA

Votes: 110 in favor 3 against 4 abstentions

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.2.9, insert the following paragraph:

"create a computer software program for the exchange of information between national public employment services with a view to favouring the access of young people to all European job vacancies;"

25 June 2012

Tabled by Mr Ramón JÁUREGUI, Mr José Antonio ALONSO, Mr Antonio GUTIÉRREZ, Ms Meritxell BATET, Mr Arcadio DÍAZ TEJERA

Votes: 121 in favor 0 against 0 abstention

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.2.9, insert the following paragraph:

"address the exclusion of young people from the educational system, as well as the risk of a digital divide due to the lack of equal opportunities in the access to the Internet, through specific software programs aimed at training young people in computing and digital technologies."

6.3regarding social protection, to:
6.3.1support the implementation of national “youth guarantee” schemes to ensure that no young person is out of employment, education or training for more than four months against their will;

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.3.1, insert the following paragraph:

"ensure that young people with special needs, notably those with disabilities, can access training and employment adapted to their capacities, be adequately remunerated and become fully integrated in society;"

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.3.1, insert the following paragraph:

"propose targeted programmes and means of integration in order to help young people in precarious situations avoid the scourge of delinquency, prostitution, self-destruction or self-exclusion caused by addictions;"

6.3.2guarantee equal opportunities for young people to choose freely and have effective access to quality education through a systematic use of scholarships having regard to family resources;
6.3.3enhance public social security coverage and encourage a greater use of private pension schemes for young workers in temporary, low-paid or otherwise precarious employment;
6.3.4ensure that first-time jobseekers have access to social benefits;

25 June 2012

Tabled by Mr Ramón JÁUREGUI, Mr José Antonio ALONSO, Mr Antonio GUTIÉRREZ, Ms Meritxell BATET, Mr Arcadio DÍAZ TEJERA

Votes: 109 in favor 4 against 5 abstentions

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 6.3.4, insert the following paragraph:

"promote the establishment of a basic statute for young trainees in all member States, defining a set of minimum guarantees for working traineeships based on a written contract, Social Security contributions, a maximum working week of 48 hours and, at least, the national minimum wage for traineeships of more than three months."

6.4regarding the promotion of active citizenship and social dialogue, to:
6.4.1make better use of new means of communication, consultation and institutional representation (including youth councils, youth organisations and youth parliaments) for building more collaborative social models that give voice to young people and adequately taken their input into account;
6.4.2foster social dialogue for addressing youth problems by developing public-private partnerships between educational institutions, enterprises, local authorities, trade unions, employment agencies and social services;
6.4.3consider setting up multifunctional youth support funds aimed at providing more scholarships for students, fostering the creation of start-up enterprises by young entrepreneurs and promoting social inclusion projects for the young generation.
7The Assembly resolves to make regular use of its “state of democracy and human rights” debates and other existing monitoring mechanisms provided in the Council of Europe legal instruments in order to assess progress made and the effectiveness of measures taken by member States in improving access to social rights, notably for the more vulnerable segments of the population such as young people in general, and the disabled or the most marginalised in particular.

DDraft Recommendation

1The Parliamentary Assembly, referring to its Resolution … (2012) on the young generation sacrificed: social, economic and political implications of the financial crisis, invites the Committee of Ministers to bring this resolution to the attention of member States, in particular on the occasion of the 9th Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Youth (Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation, 23-25 September 2012) and the World Forum for Democracy (Strasbourg, 5-11 October 2012), including the Youth Assembly (5-7 October 2012), and to promote its implementation.

In the draft recommendation, paragraph 1, after the words “and political implications of the financial crisis,” replace the word “invites” with the following word: “urges”.

2Moreover, the Assembly asks the Committee of Ministers to assist member States in modernising their legal and institutional systems in as much as they relate to youth policies, in order to enhance European co-operation and the effectiveness of mechanisms towards fostering youth access to the socio-economic rights and opportunities enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights (ETS No. 5) and the revised European Social Charter (ETS No. 163).
3The Assembly also recommends that the Committee of Ministers:
3.1accelerate the consideration of the draft recommendation to member States on the access to social rights for young people from disadvantaged neighbourhoods, with a view to adopting and presenting it to the ministers responsible for youth during their conference in Saint Petersburg;
3.2consider again the proposal to draft a European framework convention on the rights of young people, as proposed by the Assembly in its Recommendation 1978 (2011) and the various European youth organisations;
3.3closely involve the European Centre for Global Interdependence and Solidarity (North-South Centre) and the Council of Europe Development Bank in promoting youth-oriented policies and capacity- building measures, not least in the framework of the Council of Europe neighbourhood strategy in southern and eastern Mediterranean countries;
3.4urge the Youth sector and the Social Cohesion and Diversity Department to prepare proposals for further joint programmes with the European Union aimed at improving access to social, economic and political rights by young people.