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Young people at risk of being left behind
In the midst of the economic crisis, Europe’s young people are facing a crisis of their own. The group of most concern is the so-called NEETs, young people ‘not in employment, education or training’. These individuals run a high risk of falling out of the system, becoming isolated from society and left behind.
The rate of NEETs in the EU is 15.2% among those aged 15 to 29. However, as with youth unemployment, there are huge differences between Member States, ranging from 5.8% in the Netherlands to around 22% in Ireland and Italy and 23% in Bulgaria.
The economic and social costs are huge, both for the individuals concerned and for society. Research estimates the total cost to be around €120 billion per year for the EU as a whole. NEETs are also less likely to have trust in institutions such as the government, to vote or to volunteer.