Dutch govt. plans more aid for unqualified, unemployed young people

Young people wearing hoodies
Young people wearing hoodies. Photo: Tony Alter / Wikimedia commons

The Dutch government wants more and better organized aid for the about 66 thousand young people in the Netherlands who are unqualified and unemployed. Ministers Lodewijk Asscher of Social Affairs and Employment and Jet Bussemaker of Education therefore instructed benefits agency UWV, social services and municipalities to team up for a joint approach to helping this vulnerable group, the Volkskrant reports.

According to Statistics Netherlands, the Netherlands currently has about 66 thousand young people who did not finish their qualification and do not have a job. As you have to be 27 years old to qualify for welfare, these young people can easily fall off the map as they are not registered at any institutions. As they are not qualified they also have a harder time finding a job. There is therefore an increased risk of these young people descending into crime or being dependent on welfare their entire lives. They are also at increased risk of radicalization.

The government instructed the involved agencies and municipalities to work together and set up Regional Registration and Coordination Points, where young people who drop out of school prematurely are registered. Each group of municipality and involved agencies determined how many of these vulnerable young people they have in their town or city, for example by comparing various files and talking with educational institutions, and will now help the young people to finding work or finishing school, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Social Affairs said to the newspaper. 

As different regions face different problems, the Ministries decided to leave it up to the regions themselves to find appropriate solutions. 

Friesland went with job coaches, who try to organize apprenticeships for young people who dropped out of school. In the Zaan, Zuid Kennerland and Gouda regions they set up consultation tables, where counselors can discuss qualification and job possibilities with the young people and help them decide how to proceed. 

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