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Keep hoping, fighting, pope tells steelworkers

Unemployment a Europe-wide problem

20 March, 12:59
Keep hoping, fighting, pope tells steelworkers (ANSA) - Vatican City, March 20 - Pope Francis on Thursday told thousands of steelworkers whose jobs are at risk that they should never give up hoping and fighting for better economic times.

"Never stop hoping in a better future, fight for that," Francis told the workers from the Umbrian steel town of Terni, whose historic works are threatened with closure 130 years after they were founded.

"Don't get trapped by the vortex of pessimism," said Francis, who has often called for capitalism to do more to create and save jobs.

"If everyone plays their part, if everyone always places the human person at the centre, with his can get out of the morass of a tough time for the economy and jobs," he said.

Francis said unemployment was a "grievous problem" that was affecting "several European countries" including Italy where the jobless rate is 12.9% and youth unemployment 42.4% as the economy struggles out of its longest postwar recession.