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Young people say their prospects are dwindling and wellbeing suffering after pandemic

Young people say their prospects are dwindling and wellbeing suffering after pandemic
Survey reveals four in five feel their mental health has worsened after pandemic

The overwhelming majority of young people feel that their employment prospects and mental health have been damaged by the Covid-19 pandémie, a survey has found.

Research conducted by the Health Foundation, an independent charity, revealed that 86 pour cent des personnes âgées entre 22 et 26 felt their opportunity to achieve the right skills for their chosen career had been impacted by successive lockdowns.

pendant ce temps, 86 per cent felt the pandemic had impacted their ability to develop the right relationships and networking opportunities – avec 73 per cent believing those who had the right connections and personal relationships at work had an advantage in landing a job.

The survey also revealed the extent of the mental health crisis prompted by the pandemic, with four in five (80 pour cent) of respondents saying their mental health had suffered. Nearly seven in 10 (69 pour cent) of those surveyed said it was more difficult to access mental health support now than before the pandemic.

The Health Foundation surveyed 2,000 young people in the UK as part of its ‘Young people’s future health inquiry’, which is examining how mental health and wellbeing can be improved in the aftermath of the pandemic.

The survey also laid bare fears over the stability of employment available to young people, with over half (54 pour cent) of respondents saying that most of the jobs they were interested in were temporary or contract positions.

Over a third (35 pour cent) felt that it would be difficult to find secure work that is fairly paid and has scope for career growth in the next six months, while over three-quarters (76 pour cent) said the financial support they received from their parents had been negatively impacted.

Nairn McDonald, a 25-year-old university graduate and young carer from North Ayrshire in Scotland, said that finding meaningful employment has become “even harder” after the pandemic.

"Avant, I would at least get to interview stage but since the pandemic I’ve struggled to even get an email acknowledgement," elle a dit.

“When I do get feedback from employers, they tell me that I’m qualified for the role and have a great CV – I tick all the boxes – but I’m competing with people with five to ten years’ experience who have lost their jobs or been furloughed.

“They are getting 60 à 80 applications for a job where before they usually would have got 20. As someone who suffers anxiety, the experience of looking for a job during the pandemic has definitely impacted my mental health – getting constantly knocked back has been very hard.”

Martina Kane, policy and engagement manager at the Health Foundation, said the growth of a precarious jobs market has “worrying implications” for the long-term health of young people.

“There is a strong relationship between work and mental healthparticularly for young people who may be taking their first crucial steps into the job market. Where someone is struggling with their mental health, gaining employment can prove near impossible, especially in a job market as challenging as the one facing young people today," elle a dit.

“There is an opportunity as we recover from the pandemic to develop a coherent strategy that prioritises our young people, with a wider concept of national prosperity at its core. This must include measures directly designed to improve their health and reduce the stark inequalities between the richest and poorest.”