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Youth Guarantee job program kicks off May 1

Sign up with the govt, get a job offer within four months

08 April, 18:11
Youth Guarantee job program kicks off May 1 (ANSA) - Brussels, April 8 - A new European Union youth jobs program kicks off throughout Europe on May 1, including in Italy, Labor Under-Secretary Teresa Bellanova said Tuesday.

EU countries endorsed the program, called Youth Guarantee, in April 2013, aimed at making sure that every young person in Europe is offered a good-quality job, further education or work-focused training within four months after leaving education or after becoming unemployed. The offer should be for a job, apprenticeship, traineeship, or continued education and be adapted to each individual need and situation.

In Italy, this means that as of May 1, unemployed people aged 25-29 can sign up on the labor ministry website or with regional authorities, and they will be contacted with a job offer within four months.

The Youth Guarantee program has funding of 1.513 billion euros for two years, with 1.134 billion euros from the EU and the rest financed by Rome.

Those resources will be allocated to Italy's regions, with 100 million euros to be withheld by the labor ministry for educational orientation and intervention in cases where regions can't place applicants, Bellanova explained.

Regional authorities will be monitored ''daily'', and those who aren't up to the task will be immediately replaced by the ministry, she added.

The ministry has already lined up agreements with Confindustria employers' association, the Finmeccanica aerospace and defence giant, and private-sector players to participate in the program, Bellanova said.

Youth Guarantee could lift as many as 900,000 young people out of unemployment, the government said.

New data from Istat national statistics bureau showed unemployment in Italy rose to 13% in February, the highest level in about 37 years, with youth unemployment hitting 42.3%.

The EU is working to reduce youth joblessness in line with a wider target of achieving a 75% employment rate for the working-age population (20-64 years).