A recent study has revealed that 6.5 million 16-24-year-olds in America are “disconnected,” or out of school and out of work.
The Annie E. Casey Foundation conducted the study using 2011 data, finding that the prospects for youth today are incredibly bleak. The high number of disconnected youth could post “dire consequences for financial stability and employment prospects in that population,” the study reports.
Minorities and young adults from low-income families are more likely to be disconnected. In families making less than $20,000 annually, 21 percent of 16-19-year-olds are disconnected and 30 percent of 20-24-year-olds are disconnected.
These statistics are particularly troubling when placed alongside President Obama’s promises to do more to help young people secure education and jobs. And while the issue of youth unemployment or disconnection is larger than one presidency, the Obama administration has made little to no progress in solving this problem.
Young people can’t seem to see this, however. Despite the current economic crisis facing youth, 66 percent of 18-29-year-olds voted for Obama in 2012, according to a Pew Research study
. And only 37 percent of the same demographic think government does too much, while 59 percent think government should do more.
But young adults struggling to find work might not realize the government will probably have to “do more” to support them as well.
When young adults miss out on early work experience and skills it “has profound consequences for these young people, and for our economy and our nation,” the Annie E. Casey Foundation study reports. “When young people lack connections to jobs and school, government spends more to support them.”
Not exactly the American dream now, is it?