> News in English > News

Young adults 'forced to stay in nest'

Italy 'risks losing a generation'

26 May, 17:50
Young adults 'forced to stay in nest' (ANSA) - Rome, May 26 - More and more young Italian adults are living with their parents because they can't afford to move out, according to a new report that prompted a top sociologist to warn Italy faced the risk of "losing a generation".

The proportion of Italians stuck at home out of necessity rather than choice has tripled since 1983, national statistics agency Istat said in its annual report.

The statistics appeared to contradict a contention voiced by several ministers in Premier Silvio Berlusconi's centre-right government, most notably Civil Service Minister Renato Brunetta, who have accused young Italians of being 'Bamboccioni' or Mamma's Boys who choose to stay in the nest to make their lives cosier, rather than trying to make their way in the world.

On the contrary, said sociologist Chiara Saraceno, the risks posed by a 'lost generation' with no prospects is "Italy's real emergency". Only children "who are lucky to be born into the right family" can be sure of avoiding the trap, said Saraceno, an internationally renowned expert on welfare systems.

"Young people with more qualifications and with a well-off family behind them go abroad, and get along. All the others are left behind".

Saraceno, who is currently at a prestigious Berlin research institute, blasted both the centre-right government and the centre-left opposition for not realising how bad the situation was. "Unfortunately I can't see an awareness of this emergency in the actions of the government or the attitude of the opposition," she said.

"People keep talking about 'Bamboccioni', an expression I abhor because there are increasing numbers who don't want to be in their current bind, but nothing is being done to invest in human capital".

"Resources are falling and the social divide is widening". The situation could be remedied with the right action, Saraceno stressed.

"It's going to take years but you have to start somewhere".

In its report, Istat said an increasing number of young adults are simply forced to stay with their families because they can't find work or affordable housing. The number of 30-34-year-olds who are still living with their parents, despite wanting to move out, rose from 11.8% to 28.9% between 1983 and 2009.

The percentage of 25-29-year-olds in the same position almost doubled, from 34.5% to 59.2%.

Over the last six years, from 2003 to 2009, the percentage of 18-34-year-olds living at home because they really want to fell by some nine percentage points, Istat said.

In another worrying statistic, Istat said Italy has Europe's highest rate of idle young people at risk of finding no gainful place in society, national statistics agency Istat said in its annual report Wednesday.

Some 21.2% of the 15-29 age bracket are now classified as Not In Education, Employment or Training (NEET), it said.

The NEETs rose by 126,000 to some two million in 2009 because of the economic crisis, with 85,000 more in the north and 27,000 more in the centre.

About a half of the two million are in the poorer south of Italy, Istat said.

photo: Young people at Labour Day rally in Rome

Top News

    • 13:09
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Fecondazione eterologa, cade il divieto

    La Corte Costituzionale lo hanno dichiarato illegittimo
    • 12:09
    • 09 apr
    • MILANO

    Intesa paga 294 mln 'tassa Bankitalia'

    Segue Unicredit (196), ma su parametri patrimoniali impatto soft
    • 11:40
    • 09 apr

    Papa: tacciano le armi in Siria

    Dolore per assassinio gesuita Van der Lugt e per vittime guerra
    • 10:43
    • 09 apr
    • MILANO

    Garlasco: mamma Rita, ho ancora fiducia

    E' cominciato il processo d'appello bis, Stasi è in aula
    • 09:03
    • 09 apr
    • MILANO

    Borsa: Milano apre in rialzo, +0,24%

    Identico aumento per l'indice Ftse All share
    • 09:00
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Immigrazione: Alfano,un morto su barcone

    Continuano sbarchi, 4.000 migranti soccorsi in ultime 48 ore
    • 07:01
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Mafia, colpo a cosche in E-R

    Operazione cc regione e Crotone,13 ordinanze,sequestro da 13 mln
    • 06:36
    • 09 apr

    Pakistan:bomba a mercato,almeno 15 morti

    Ordigno ad alto potenziale in zona controllata forze sicurezza
    • 01:05
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Immigrazione: Alfano, è allarme sbarchi

    Non bastano 80 mln Ue per Frontex. Def grazie a nostra azione
    • 00:23
    • 09 apr
    • NEW YORK

    Australia e Svezia, paradisi per giovani

    Secondo studio Usa. Italia fuori da classifica prime 30 nazioni