“Guarantee Our Future” – a forum for discussion on youth unemployment and the ‘Youth Guarantee’

Friday June 7th, Cavan Crystal Hotel, Cavan Town.
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9.30am Registration

10.00am Welcome – Caoimhghin O’Caolain TD for Cavan Monaghan

10.10am Opening address – Martina Anderson MEP.

10.25am – A Youth Guarantee for the EU.

Catherine Blair (European Commission, DG EMPL)

Ines Zuber MEP (Portuguese Communist Party & member of the European Parliament’s Employment & Social Affairs Committee);

Valerie Duffy, European Youth Forum;

Stefan Lindborg, President, ‘Ung Vanster’ (Young Left), Sweden.

Followed by Q&A. Chair – Megan Fearon MLA.

11.30am Break

11.45am – The situation in Ireland, north and south.

  • James Doorley, National Youth Council of Ireland;
  • Chris Quinn, “NI” Youth Forum;
  • Adrianne Peltz, President NUS/USI ;
  • Senator Kathryn Reilly;
  • Followed by Q&A. Chair – Phil Flanagan MLA.

12.45pm Closing remarks – Barry McElduff MLA

1pm Lunch served.

Sinn Fein MEP Martina Anderson is hosting a conference tomorrow (Friday June 7th) in Cavan town on the issues of youth unemployment in Ireland and the EU’s ‘Youth Guarantee’ proposals.

She said, “One of the most worrying consequences of the economic downturn across the EU is the sharp rise in youth unemployment levels, with those in both parts of Ireland hitting all-time highs, and so in this the Irish Presidency of the EU, I am holding an event on these issues in County Cavan”.

Anderson continued, “The event is entitled ‘Guarantee Our Future’ and the idea is to bring together young people and their representative organizations to speak of their experiences, and along with the relevant agencies, to look at what has been proposed to date, and how effective it has been. I’m delighted to be holding this event in Co Cavan, in association with my colleague Senator Kathryn Reilly, and am very pleased that the major youth organisations will be taking part. These include the National Youth Council of Ireland, the NI Youth Forum and the National Union of Students/Union of Students of Ireland as well as the European Youth Forum. We will also have speakers from the European Commission, European Parliament and from the Young Left campaign group from Sweden, as well as Sinn Fein members of both the Assembly and Oireachtas”.

Anderson concluded, “We need leaders at EU and state level to put a focus on combating this growing problem, by fleshing out the detail of initiatives like the proposed ‘Youth Guarantee’ and making sure that such schemes are adequately resourced. Youth unemployment is leading to the return of the bad old days of mass youth emigration from this island – we must all work to ensure that the future options for our young people are not in Clapham or Canberra but here at home”.

“Guarantee Our Future” conference will take place on Friday June 7th, in the Cavan Crystal Hotel, Cavan town.

Registration – 9.30am, opening 10am, lunch (complimentary) served at 1pm.

Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson is hosting a 22-strong delegation of MEPs at a conference covering a wide range of topics in Derry’s City Hotel over the next two days. Including the MEPs the delegation will involve over 100 international guests visiting the City.

Martina Anderson said:

“I welcome the opportunity to host the Northern leg of the visit to Ireland by this large contingent of MEPs representing the GUE/NGL grouping at the European Parliament.

“During the two day event there will be open discussion on a wide range of topics from the background to the conflict to the fight-back to austerity and the economic alternatives and challenges for left politics.

“Among those addressing the Conference will be deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness MLA and Socialist Party Leader Joe Higgins TD.

“Other contributors include, Peter Shirlow, Queens University, Professor Bill Rolston, University of Ulster, Sinn Féin Chairperson, Declan Kearney, PUP Foyle Chairperson, Leslie Mitchell, NIPSA President Patrick Mullholland and Maureen Collins of the ‘Pink Ladies’.

“A debate on the International Dimension of the Irish Peace Process will include representatives of organisations involved in peace processes in other areas of conflict throughout the world.

“International Peace Process speakers include Akif Wan, Representative of the Kurdish national Congress (KNK), Kurdistan, T. U. Senan; Representative of Tamil Solidarity, Sri Lanka, Gorka Elejabarietta; Representative of Sortu, Basque Country and Adnan Shabab, Representative of the delegation of Palestine to Ireland.”

Martina Anderson MEP has stressed the urgency to make progress of the CAP reform. Speaking from Brussels, the Sinn Féin MEP said, “Despite the optimism of the Simon Covney, it is looking increasingly difficult for the Irish Presidency to achieve their goal of concluding the CAP reform under their mandate.

“Feedback from this week’s informal Agricultural Council have shown that there are sill many areas, such as capping and convergence, in which Council and Parliament disagree, this in addition to the growing displeasure from the farming unions should be sending out warning signs.

“As the negotiations continue, many from the parliament’s side feel there is little good will coming from the council, who refuse to compromise on many core issues, such as flexibility. This could lead to the negotiations stagnating, and becoming even more complex and technical, which would be very dangerous at this point in the game.

“I and many others will be waiting with bated breath to see the outcome of the June meetings; many are still relying on the package being presented for an agreement at this meeting, and a failure to do this would be a severe blow for the whole process.