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Nelson releases ten month old report confirming need for Labor’s Youth Guarantee.

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Media Statement

Jenny Macklin Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Shadow Minister for Education, Employment and Training

Nelson releases ten month old report confirming need for Labor’s Youth Guarantee

1 June 2004

The Education Minister today released a ten month old report into youth transition measures which reveals the need for Labor’s Youth Guarantee: Learn or Earn policy.

The Minister has delayed until today, the release of an evaluation of Career and Transition Projects (CATS) undertaken by Miles Morgan Research which found there was a “pressing need for comprehensive career and transition services to be provided to young people throughout Australia”. Despite this finding the Minister has not turned the CATS pilot programs into an ongoing initiative.

The Howard Government has consistently refused to commit to funding CATS for more than 12 months at a time.

For the past three years, the future of this program has been hanging in the balance. This has resulted in high staff turnover and an inability for young people to form ongoing relationships with program staff.

School principals have become hesitant to involve program workers in school activities because of the damage to students when there is no guarantee that the staff will be sticking around.

This is a woefully inadequate response to the fact that 45,000 young people leave school early each year and don’t go on to either full-time work or full-time study.

The Government’s inaction and complacency means that more and more young people are losing their way in life.

The Government should adopt Labor’s Youth Guarantee to give every 15 to 18 year old support to study at school, TAFE, or university or be in a job or apprenticeship.