UASA Media Release: 13 June 2022
Statement by Abigail Moyo, spokesperson of the trade union UASA:
The 2022 Youth Day theme, The year of Charlotte Mannya Maxeke: Growing youth employment for an inclusive and transformed society, offers an opportunity for contemplation.
16 June 2022 marks the 46 th commemoration of the 1976 South African youth uprising, where the youth stood united and firm in opposition against racist apartheid laws enforcing inequality, unequal education, and discrimination.
Now, 46 years later, UASA calls on the youth of 2022 to stand together and fight unemployment and economic disaster. Government has failed our youth concerning employment. As our future leaders, the country’s young seem to have little choice but to make a difference and carve out a future for the nation on their own initiative. The youth needs to gear up and build its own future.
Young people are the future of our country and should be our economic drivers. Instead, Stats SA’s Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) recently revealed that unemployment was highest among those aged 15 to 24 years (63.9%) and 25 to 34 years (42.1%). The number of people not in employment, education or training (NEET) stands at 3.8 million. Unemployment, coupled with social issues like poverty, gender-based violence, mental and physical health problems and a high HIV rate in a post-Covid-19 world, places a heavy burden on our youth.
UASA urges the youth of South Africa to stand up for themselves and be counted in our economy. Whilst pressure mounts on government to stimulate growth and drive economic growth; we encourage the youth not to give up on finding employment, research freelance or part-time opportunities and utilise their business ideas and any money- generating skills to create an income and a better life.
UASA wants to see the youth pursue available government and private funding for small and medium enterprises and other start-up businesses. The more enterprises get off the ground; the more young people can get actively involved in the economy and grow jobs.
At the same time, UASA also urges employers in all sectors to afford young people opportunities to set foot in the business arena and build a stable future for the coming generation.
UASA wishes all young South Africans a happy Youth Day.
For further enquiries or to set up a personal interview, contact Abigail Moyo at 065 170 0162.