Young unemployed: a "lost generation"?

Members of the Flemish Catholic trade union's youth section have discussed their concerns about growing youth unemployment with Prime Minister Yves Leterme (Flemish Christian democrat). The ACV youth section fears that if the downward spiral in youth employment continues we risk having a "lost generation".

Members of the youth section of the Flemish Catholic trade union (ACV) met with Prime Minister Yves Leterme to discuss their concerns. Last year youth unemployment increased in Belgium by 35%. If the trend continues we will have a "lost generation".

The delegation meeting with PM Leterme had a text with them with a number of points that they would like to put to youngsters over the coming months. The intention is to get more insight into the way youngsters are looking for work and the specific problems they come up against.

Mr Leterme told the group of youngsters that the government has already taken measures to boost employment, such as VAT reductions in the construction and catering sectors. There is also the job plan launched by Labour Minister Joëlle Milquet (Francophone Christian democrat).

Still, Mr Leterme warned that we have to be prepared for more bad news in 2010. Earlier the PM had said that he was afraid the employment situation would get worst before it gets better.