Date published: 
21 August 2020
Media type: 
Media release
Audience: 
General public

The issues facing young Australians have been highlighted in a Youth Taskforce Interim Report released today.

Aimed at informing the Morrison Government of issues and matters of concern for young people, the report will also underline tangible measures to support those in most need, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck, said the report provides a snapshot, informed by extensive consultation, relevant data, surveys and research.

“The major findings in the interim report confirm the key issues for young Australians identified in other youth surveys, including mental health and employment concerns,” Minister Colbeck said.

While the consultations heard of varying issues, the Taskforce stated there were also many ideas for improving services and making a genuine difference in the lives of disadvantaged young people.

“I thank every person who shared their experiences and positive ideas.”

The Youth Taskforce was established in July last year in a tangible step by the Australian Government to ensure young people continued to have a voice.

This was particularly important following the impact of last summer’s bushfire season and the spread of COVID-19, Minister Colbeck said.

“Both events have impacted young people particularly hard and exacerbated many problems, especially for the disadvantaged and marginalised.

“Rather than preparing a final report due to COVID-19, the Taskforce is now concentrating on developing a National Youth Policy Framework which will consider the impact of these emergencies as well as underlying issues.”

The Australian Government is committed to implementing measures to support young people.

It has already delivered more than $126 million in initiatives including extending Jobkeeper and expanding our 50 per cent wage subsidy for apprentices and trainees.

Additionally, the $2 billion JobTrainer fund will provide up to 340,700 vocational education and training places for school leavers and job seekers to gain the skills they need to get a job.

Mental health services continue to be a key focus with more than $174 million for service providers and $1 million in funding for youth advocacy organisations to help young people reach their potential by establishing a sustainable and vibrant youth advocacy network.

The National Youth Policy Framework will be developed by the end of 2020.

Minister Colbeck said young people, youth organisations and relevant government agencies will be consulted on the framework in the coming months.

The Youth Taskforce Interim Report can be found here.