This Boston Globe Article examines the short and long-term benefits of working as a teen.
At a time when young people are facing a mountain of new challenges in college, the labor market, and the home, their new report, In This Together, lays clear how much our failure to provide young people with good jobs is costing our economy and the public each year at the federal and state level.
Since 1999, the share of employed teens in Massachusetts plummeted from 53 percent to 26.8 percent during 2012. This reflects a national trend in declining teen employment rates over the last decade. We need to think of early work experience as more than a way to put a few extra dollars into teens’ pockets so that they may be able to buy a variety of amenities conducive to teen life. Mentoring youth in the workplace is an essentiail component of the workforce development cycle and phase one of the recruitment process.
Lack of job opportunities reduces teens’ exposure to the world of work and their ability to acquire both basic employability skills (attendance, team work, communicating with other workers and customers) and occupational skills. Being jobless all summer also increases their risk of social isolation (staying at home), hanging out on the street, and exposure to or participation in urban violence and delinquent behavior.
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