Blackadder’s Lair

The home of many a cunning plan

Young and Unemployed

The New York Times had an editorial Monday arguing that Barack Obama ought to give attention in crafting his stimulus/public works program to the plight of teen workers. As the Times puts it:

Young people who fail to find early jobs are more likely to remain underemployed or unemployed into their 20s and beyond. The risks are compounded for low-income youth, who are more likely to leave school and have other problems when they do not find work.

According to a recent analysis by Andrew Sum, an economist at Northeastern University, the percentage of teens employed has fallen from nearly 45 percent in 2000 to about 30 percent today. That is almost 10 times the decrease for adult workers, who are increasingly taking jobs that once went to teenagers.

The situation is far worse in low-income minority areas, where the youth employment rate appears to be hovering not much above 10 percent. That will only get worse as the economy contracts. And even when the recession ends, it could take an additional two or three years before youth employment begins to recover.

More. Of course, one policy that likely contributes to teenage unemployment is the minimum wage. Continue reading

December 10, 2008 Posted by | Economy, Politics, Work | Leave a comment