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New survey reveals crisis of confidence in North East youth employment

A new survey has found that 21 per cent of the North East’s under 25s are concerned they will lose their job during the coronavirus pandemic recession.

The figures emerge from a nationwide study commissioned by Newcastle-based awarding organisation and education services provider, NCFE.

The study asked a series of questions to more than 2000 16-24 year olds about their education and skills.

It revealed that 45 per cent of young people in the North East cite ‘lack of confidence’ as the thing holding them back from progressing in their careers, while 28 per cent said they don’t have the opportunities or don’t know what it is they want to do next.

25 per cent said they felt they had not been taught the skills in school or college, which they needed for their future work, life and career.

A further 18 per cent said they lacked the general business skills required to help them secure employment.

In light of the findings, NCFE has launched its ‘Go the Distance’ programme, designed with college and training providers to provide skills-based study for learners aged 16-19 and support young people into the world of work.

David Gallagher, chief executive at NCFE, said: “The coronavirus pandemic has significantly impacted the nation’s workforce, particularly its youngest members, and it’s clear that in the months to come we will face a youth employment challenge unlike any we have seen.

“The long-term, scarring impact of youth unemployment is well understood. Young people who experience long-term unemployment are more likely to be employed in semi-skilled and unskilled occupations when they do re-enter the labour market; and, are likely to suffer a negative impact on earnings over the duration of their working life.

“Our challenge is to support young people to train, find and progress in work in spite of the current context.

“We want to prevent a generation of young people suffering the long-term effects that we know are associated with a prolonged period of youth unemployment.”