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EPSU – young workers and precarious work Nick Clark Working Live Research Institute.

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Presentation on theme: "EPSU – young workers and precarious work Nick Clark Working Live Research Institute."— Presentation transcript:

1 EPSU – young workers and precarious work Nick Clark Working Live Research Institute

2 Main themes u 3 Key sectors: u Energy & water u Public administration, defence, social security u Health & social care u 16-24 year olds u Employment u Precarity u Collective bargaining u Training, progression & careers

3 EU 27 and selected countries u Bulgaria u Czech Republic u France u Germany u Greece u Italy u Netherlands u Spain u UK

4 Youth in the European labour market u High level of unemployment (21% compared to 10%, ranging from 8% Austria to 46% Spain) u Low activity rate (50-60%, compared to 70%+) u Increasing participation in tertiary education u In work, more likely to u Have temporary contract (4 times more likely) u Work part-time involuntarily u Be low paid u Less likely to u Be self-employed u Hit hard during the crisis

5 Change in youth unemployment rates 2007- 2010 (EU 27)


7 Part time as % of all workers, 15-24 yrs

8 Proportion 16-24 year olds with temporary contract (Eurostat Q2 2010)

9 Change in temporary employment

10 Activity status young people EU 27, 2008 (from EMCO report no 5,2010)

11 Policy context in Europe u Youth on the Move – Commission’s 2010 initiative, primarily aimed at improving educational levels, but also to launch “Youth employment framework” u Interventions to support young workers in OECD countries report (World Bank 2007) found direct employment strategies in US and Canada, but not Europe u European Employment Observatory Review, Youth employment measures, 2010 (published Feb 2011) – no policy initiatives reported relating to state as employer u Eurofound study (2011) finds active labour market strategies common government response (sometimes contested by unions), but again no mention of public sector’s role as employer u “Overall, governments’ policies towards young workers have tended to emphasise the importance of getting young people into work, no matter the quality of the jobs available.”


13 Youth employment by sector 2005 (EU-25)







20 Ranked by proportion of youth in population







27 Sectoral change in employment by age 2008-2010 in France (Schulze-Marmeling, HERA on EIRO)




31 Use of agency labour (CIETT figures)




35 Job security and age: French civil service (2008)



38 Youth as % all temps: health & social work q1 2008-q2 2011, EU 27

39 Youth as % all temps: public admin, defence, social sec. q1 2008-q2 2011, EU 27

40 Youth as % all temps: water, waste q1 2008-q2 2011, EU 27

41 Youth as % all temps: electricity, gas, etc. q1 2008-q2 2011, EU 27

42 summary from data u Unemployment becoming more widespread amongst Europe’ young workers u As measures (but not definitions) of precarity, temporary contracts and involuntary part time working more prevalent u Public services perform worse than economy as a whole in employing young workers – public administration universally the worst u Young workers more affected by crisis – particularly in public services

43 Interviews – key themes u Forms of precarious work amongst young workers in target sectors, u Social dialogue: u Recruitment of young workers u Training for young workers u transition of young workers from precarious to more stable work u Precarious work: u Temporary contracts (including agencies) u Stages, apprenticeships u actions by unions

44 Preliminary outcome from interviews u absence of recruitment of young workers u precarious forms of work u previous agreements being abandoned or breached u ending of government support programme u amendments to legal protections u development of youth networks

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