Top-level Strategies Promoting the Social Inclusion of Young People (September 2019)
One of the overarching aims of the EU Youth Strategy 2019-2027 is to create more and equal opportunities for all young people to participate in the education and labour market as well as in society more generally. The development of a national strategy on social inclusion can be one of the means to address the exclusion of young people with fewer opportunities in European societies. A strategy is an overarching public document, an action plan, or a set of official documents indicating the main directions to be followed in the organisation of policy making at national level.
Many European countries address the social inclusion of young people through both their National Youth Strategy and one or more broad top-level strategy or programme that may target the wider population, but includes a particular focus on youth. The latter are usually national strategies for combatting social exclusion and poverty; for promoting education and employment; for ensuring children and young people’s rights and welfare; for promoting the inclusion of particular groups of young people, e.g. those who are homeless, disabled, at risk of crime or radicalisation or belonging to the LGBTIQA+ community.
For example in Lithuania, the social inclusion of young people is addressed through the National Youth Policy Development Programme for 2011-2019 as well as through several broader top-level strategies such as: the Action plan for increasing social inclusion 2014-2020; the Programme for intensive long-term support for unemployed and school drop-outs; the National working plan for the implementation of the Youth Guarantee initiative; and the Rural development programme for Lithuania 2014-2020.
In slightly less than half of the surveyed countries, the social inclusion of young people is addressed only through broader top-level strategy(ies)/programme(s); whereas in Greece, Spain, Slovenia and Sweden, the topic is addressed only through the National Youth Strategy. In Italy and Iceland there is no top-level strategy addressing social inclusion.