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Concerns and Expectations on the Job Support Funds for Youth

By Subin Hong 

On March 18, South Korea’s Ministry of Employment and Labor announced that accepting the “Job Activity Support Fund for Youth,” which will pay 500,000 won a month for up to six months to young people preparing for employment, will begin on March 25. The eligible applicants for the funding are those aged 18 to 34, who must be within two years of graduating or dropping out of high school, university or graduate school.

There are growing concerns about the policy, which is an appealing news fo only young people. It has set a budget of over 200 billion for more than 100,000 young people, sparking controversy among people such as “inappropriate distribution of taxes paid by the people.” Also, the problem is that the government is almost like its previous ‘Youth Allowance’ system.” “Youth allowances are also paid 500,000 won a month to the unemployed for up to six months, but about 5,000 people are eligible for this benefit, far less than the number of beneficiaries of Job Activity Support Fund for Youth. To make a difference from the Ministry of Employment and Labor’s supporting Fund, the city government changed the terms of their “Youth Allowance” to “job seekers two years after graduation.”

The biggest problem with the policy was that there was no way to know if it was used to get a job by recipients. To improve this problem, the Ministry of Employment and Labor made a limit in the use of supporting fund, giving cash-unavailable credit cards to recipients and limiting unnecessary purchases. Also, the recipients will be required to carry out their plans and job-related lectures on a regular basis during the period of receiving the aid.

Given the growing public concern, the Ministry of Employment and Labor should show justification for the ” Job Activity Support Fund for Youth ” through exact figures. The Ministry of Employment and Labor said, “We will help young people to find jobs in a stable environment, receive job training organized by job experts and develop their skills, as intended to support the “job preparation” costs.

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