UN says pandemic could inflict severe damage on youth

The United Nations warned Tuesday that the coronavirus crisis could have a severe and lasting impact on the life prospects of young adults without swift remedial action.

The UN’s International Labour Organization said the career prospects of people aged 18 to 29 were taking a hit from the COVID-19 pandemic, while students faced a “gloomy outlook” for its effects on their education.

The ILO report entitled “Youth and COVID-19: impacts on jobs, education, rights and mental well-being” said young adults had been disproportionately affected by the crisis.

The report was based on the Global Survey on Youth and COVID-19, a study of more than 12,000 young people aged 18 to 29, conducted online in 23 languages across 112 countries between April 21 and May 21.

The respondents were largely educated young adults with internet access, representing students and working young people with a tertiary education.

“The study finds the impact of the pandemic on young people to be systematic, deep and disproportionate. It has been particularly hard on young women, younger youth and youth in lower-income countries,” the report said.

“Unless urgent action is taken, young people are likely to suffer severe and long-lasting impacts from the pandemic.” (AFP | Robin Millard)

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