[Excerpt] Since the beginning of the economic crisis in 2008, young people have experienced difficulties in gaining a foothold in the labour market. While the situation has improved in recent times, in some Member States the youth unemployment rates are still a cause for concern. As a result of the crisis, young people are now the group at highest risk of social exclusion in Europe. The disengagement of young people can have serious consequences for an individual, for society and for the economy as a whole.
This report investigates the social inclusion of young people in Europe. It first reviews the situation facing young people in Europe today and the cumulative disadvantages arising from disengagement from the labour market and education. It then goes on to explore recent EU strategies aimed at promoting the social inclusion of young people, focusing in particular on the operation of the Youth Guarantee initiative to combat youth unemployment in 10 EU Member States. Finally, the report examines several broader approaches to support social inclusion, including strands designed to promote youth empowerment and participation in society.