We must look after young in worst depression since 1930s

IN regard to more cash needed to fund youth services in North Tyneside (News Guardian, September 8), I suggest the moral imperative is to look after our young in the worst depression since the 1930s.

Nationally, youth unemployment is about one million, and the north east, including North Tyneside, has the highest unemployment in the country.

Thousands of North Tyneside teenagers each year have to make serious career decisions, many while still in school.

They need high quality careers advice and youth service help.

In today’s deepening depression, jobs are scarce, and respected economic forecasters expect much worse.

We, in our area, have the best youth in the country.

Our children did not riot, and a larger than average proportion of them volunteer for Afghanistan in their desire to work and also protect us.

A majority come from the poorest areas in North Tyneside.

Some are brought back dead or permanently injured. Our youngsters know of these dangers before they go.

We should remember that young people are merely developing adults who need our help in their development.

We must not deny them hopes and dreams by removing their careers service (Connexions), or take away their youth centre so that there is no place to safely get rid of their massive amounts of energy.

If we do, we can only expect terrible, terrible problems.

Anyone who has been a parent knows this instinctively.

I suggest that to reduce youth facilities, including youth workers, is wrong.

We know teenagers need space and youth workers to guide them – to develop their personal abilities and moral standards. These are the things employers are looking for, and which make a better society.

Don’t slash the careers and youth service budget.

The depression is predicted to last another five years.

Damaging developing 16 to 21-year-olds for five years will damage them permanently.

Let’s look after all our kids properly in this depression.

BOB JEFFREY

Whitley Bay