Now then, being a youngster today, should be the happiest times they have. I am fairly certain this is not actually the case. Let me define "youngster" first. I am meaning someone who has recently left school, male or female is not relevant. For the purpose of the exercise the youngster is not particularly brilliant academically, neither are they particularly slow. Having left an ordinary secondary school they live on the edge of a largish city. Reasonable time at school, some good friends made. Youngsters like this are churned out of our threadbare education systems in huge numbers every year, year after year constantly.
Main event in this youngsters life so far having been parents splitting up a few years ago, so, out of school into the wide world of adulthood. So, times have been rather hard although the youngster doesn't know of any other way.
Many of our children fall into this category, it has sadly become the norm. Just what exactly awaits someone like this in the modern UK world ?
Next time you are wandering around town have a look in any of the hundreds (thousands) of coffee or burger bars, take away outlets, hair salons, supermarkets, on and on , you will see young people carrying out their duties with that resigned air they all possess. Unless it is in a certain burger outlet where that carefully practised smile is required as they say "Would you like fries with that ? " . This stuff goes right through me every time I come across it. What have these fine young people done to deserve this ?
The work they do is important work. Important to the customer who wants a decent product, important to the business owner, for obvious reasons, and important to the employee, for quite a few reasons, the main one of which should be the ability to ACTUALLY live. I could go on about the money that the owner is making out of these young "units", I will leave that for another day. Let me just say I see the balance as being rather unfair. So, ACTUALLY live, what do I mean by that exactly ?
At aged under 18 the NMW is £4-35. That is how much they are rewarded for their services. Now maybe it's me, I see that as an insulting amount. You can safely assume these youngsters will hardly ever see a whole weekend off, and quite likely two days off together will be a rarity. I,m struggling not to rip in to the employers here, but I did say I would leave that for now. You can bet none of these youngsters will have even heard of a Union. Mention of one would likely see the job taken away. -Happily I can report that efforts are being made to change this via the McStrike etc.
Nobody will ever convince me that all those hundreds of thousands of businesses can only possibly keep going by paying out the minimum they can legally get away with.
All they are actually doing is cashing in on altruistic youths. Simple as that.
There is a "Development rate" at aged 18-20 of £6-15,,, is this really what they see as ample reward at that age ? These youths are likely starting to think about owning stuff, motorbike, car, go on a holiday, start socialising around the town centre, or quite possibly settle down with a partner. Now, here's where things really do become quite dark and ominous. Lets start with a car. I don't like the damn things actually, If I won one I would sell it , however this is not about me. Being a youth and wanting a motor means forking out as much as the value of the machine in Insurance alone. (it did when my young son tried it), so, for the purpose of this piece we can rule out a car. Bit of a slap in the face considering the "dead end no hope" existence this youth is experiencing.
Here's a point, considering this youth is basically working for sweet FA are they not "financially inactive" to a large degree ? They sure as hell are unskilled, my view, that is deliberate. Starts in that threadbare education system I hinter at earlier.
Whilst all this is going on in the current youth universe something truly demoralising is also going on. They are seeing it as normal. They become conditioned to it. They accept it. They don't know any better.
No rights at work to speak of, no organised group to represent them. Holiday pay, Maternity pay, all those other things that protect the shop floor employee disappearing.
Plus an inability to ACTUALLY live. Do we currently have a youth Minister ? Naughty side of me thinks if we did it would be somebody like Grayling or Patel.
Aged 21-24 the rate becomes £7-70. Like WOW eh ? As far as I can ascertain there is no Youth minister, Flashman did away with it and called it the "Minister for Civil Society".
I have no idea what that is supposed to mean, I strongly suspect that Flashman himself had no idea, rather like his ideas re the EU Ref. So, as young adults the youths are now getting £7-70, by the way, who sets these rates ? How are they arrived at ?
At this age many young adults probably don't want to live with Mummy and Daddy any more. Want to have their own front door, and live their lives their way. Having said that, there will be many parents praying for the day the young uns clear off. So, what happens now ? How in hell do the youngsters make their way ?
Simple answer they don't. Life delivers it's early knock out blow to the perfectly reasonable aspirations of the young adult. Surely there should be ample provision for those who want to fly the nest ? Those who do not have access to tens of thousands of pounds, as it is, that is not the case and it looks like it won't be for many decades to come. I refuse to believe that Social Housing cannot be provided on a proper scale.
Some cities are actually managing to do it. It is a national scandal of epic proportions.
Huge shock coming. Massive assault on those perfectly reasonable aspirations is brewing. As most of you will be aware our current Govt is preparing the way for such fine young people to be herded into all the "unskilled" dross our foreign friends used to do. Not in the least bit surprising really. But truly shocking.
I have no idea how they will implement this. Our hard right Govt really is very clever when it comes to mapping out meagre existences for our younger people. I can foresee agencies tapping into schools and having these mundane futures ready and waiting before the kids even leave.
Not much bothers me these days, mistreating the younger generation like this makes me seethe. I don't hear many people speaking up on their behalf. Too many folk have plenty to say about the youth of today, usually negative stuff.
Does anyone ever conclude that perhaps they are just showing that they have given up before they have even started ?
If they have, are they really wrong in so doing ?
Some time ago I wrote a piece about a young girl called Lisa walking to school in the rain, it is sort of relevant, could Lisa be one of the ones involved above ?
Please help me by spreading word of this site.
Many thanks for looking.