Today’s young people will be the first since the second World War and the creation of the European community to be less well-off than the generation before them. For this reason, it is crucial that the voices of young workers are heard before and after next month's elections.
However, just 28 per cent of people aged 18 to 24 were inspired to go out and vote in the last European elections. industriAll Europe youth believes the best way to raise that number is to give young people something better to go out and vote for.
The manifesto published today sets out a positive vision of a social Europe which would give young people what their parents had and better. It calls for:
- Access to good education: Education is the foundation upon which the rest of our lives are built. IndustriAll Youth calls for education to be freely accessible to all Europeans.
- Quality Jobs: Jobs are not enough - we need quality jobs with good wages, job security, safe and healthy workplaces and a high level of social protection. Too many young workers are trapped in precarious jobs with almost no access to quality employment. The focus must not be on just any jobs but on creating better jobs.
- Right to Training: Addressing the challenges of and preparing workers for the digital, green and globalised economy of the future is essential. Young workers should be entitled to training from the moment they enter a new place of work, throughout their working lives.
- Work-Life Balance: In a connected world, workers should have the right to switch off when they have finished their shift. Work life should facilitate a good home life, not the other way around. Leave during illness, parental leave and carers’ leave are crucial for young workers to balance their work lives and their home lives.
- Equality: We do not want a Europe in which workers are put in competition with each other, in which companies use a fragmented Europe to shop for the best corporate tax rates and minimum wages or pit workers against each other. IndustriAll Youth calls for European solidarity and Europe-wide social standards.
- We believe in European industry: Europe was at the bedrock of the first and second industrial revolutions. It should remain at the forefront during the current low-carbon and digital revolutions. This will only be possible through ‘more’ rather than ‘less’ Europe.
- We believe in a strong, democratic and social Europe: An open, inclusive and democratic Europe with social values at its core – one in which nobody is left behind. As democracy does not end at the factory gate, strengthened workers’ participation rights are also needed at company level.