Chapter 8: Young adults on the move: Tensions between EU and national-level policies
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A basic function of welfare states is guaranteeing social protection to all citizens. European citizenship aims to create a level playing field for citizens of all Member States. In the process, some categories of citizens tend to be overlooked, or even deprived of previous rights. In this chapter, we focus on young adults as a vulnerable category of citizens. They appear to suffer the most from high unemployment rates, and are encouraged in the Europe 2020 strategy to be mobile to explore opportunities outside their country. However, the rights of young, mobile Europeans are not per se guaranteed if they migrate. A critical analysis of the Youth on the Move program, and recent National Reform Programmes of Member States identifies key discrepancies between EU goals for young adults’ mobility and their social, political, legal and economic position.

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