Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/656/11151
Volunteering 'plaster' for unemployment
On 7 February the government approved plans for charities including the Prince's Trust to set up stalls in Jobcentre Plus offices across the country.
What a fantastic alternative the government is offering whilst they raise university fees, scrap EMA and preside over youth unemployment of nearly one million!
Volunteering can be a good way for people to gain personal fulfilment, experience in a particular field or to do something productive with spare time or a gap year.
However it is no alternative to paid employment.
Young people will be expected to survive on the poverty living that benefits provide whilst doing work that could be used to undercut wages in existing public sector workforces.
Whilst the government freezes recruitment across much of the public sector and slashes wages and jobs their answer is to put a plaster over the 20% rate of youth unemployment, the highest figure since records began in 1992.
If the government was serious about tackling unemployment it would put money and resources into mass employment and apprenticeship programmes that offer young people decent wages, decent conditions and a chance to contribute to society in a meaningful way.
In The Socialist 9 February 2011:
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party NHS campaign
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party feature
Socialist Party youth and students
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party Marxist analysis