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Nearly one in ten young people never intend to start working

New research suggests that Gen Z is losing hope in what they consider a ‘hostile labour market,’ after a poll found that nine per cent of respondents aged 18 to 24 do not plan on getting a job.  

Despite the assertions of Kim K and Molly-Mae, it turns out that close to one in ten young people never intend to start working.

This is according to new research from City & Guilds, which found that as many as 227,000 Gen Zers across the UK who are currently studying or unemployed do not plan on getting a job during their lifetime.

It also revealed that 30 per cent of respondents aged 18 to 24 do not think they can achieve their career ambitions and that the general consensus among British youth trying to enter what they consider a ‘hostile labour market’ is one of hopelessness.

Now, as shocking as these figures may seem in the age of’ girlboss’ influencers repeatedly telling us to get our ‘fucking asses up and work’ because we ‘all have the same 24 hours in a day,’ are the results of the survey really all that surprising?

For starters, young people most certainly drew the short straw in lockdown, missing out on schooling, university, and training throughout the two year period it took the government to get ahead of COVID-19.

The impact this has had on their occupation prospects was confirmed recently by the Learning and Work Institute, which put out a report in 2021 warning of a ‘lost generation’ lacking direction, ambition, and drive post-pandemic.

But as Kirstie Donnelly, CEO of the skills development organisation, rightly stresses, ‘we can’t keep blaming the pandemic for issues facing today’s youth.’

Youth Misspent: Uncovering the harsh realities for Britain's young people in today's job market - News

‘High youth unemployment has been an issue for more than a decade and the pandemic was just another challenge heaped onto an already creaking system that makes it incredibly difficult for young people to convert their aspirations into good jobs,’ she adds.

Currently, with the cost of living crisis and rent rising at the rate it is, many Gen Zers are lying awake at night plagued by fear that they won’t be able to afford essentials – let alone a home.

With this in mind, they’re failing to see the point in subjecting themselves to a 9-5, particularly because those of their peers already doing so are increasingly financially precarious.

‘Work doesn’t pay,’ said writer James Ball on a recent episode of the New Statesman podcast.

‘You can be in professions and you can’t get a house. People are doing everything ‘right’ and not getting the living standards of their parents at their age.’

What Ball alludes to, is that Gen Zers have witnessed first-hand the gradual decline of both average income and working conditions.

Consequently, their anti-work sentiment – driven by the question of what value lies in working for the sake of it – will unlikely subside until these vitally significant facets of seeking employment are dealt with.


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