Generation Brexit: What does it means for youth?
During the referendum on the 23rd of June 2016, which over 70% of the UK participated in, the country saw history in the making. We will leave the EU. However, what will happen to young adults!?
A staggering 71% of 18-25 year olds, with a further 54% of 25-49 year olds voted to Remain in the European Union (EU). It is also interesting to mention, 68% with a formal education, a degree or higher voted to remain, whilst only 30% with a GCSE level or lower voted Leave.
An issue that is likely to become worse post-Brexit is housing. Being able to own a home is STILL not likely post-Brexit. There is a misconception that once “all these immigrants are out of the country” the chances of owning a home will increase. This is false. It is just as difficult, if not more so, for migrants to climb the social housing ladder. In 2016/2017, 90% of social housing went to UK nationals. Leaving the EU will not suddenly create a wave of homes. This crisis is only made worse with the ever increasing government schemes for first time buyers to purchase a house. The lack of social housing being built for last few decades and the government’s policy of austerity means not enough affordable homes are being built. With little supply of homes and an increase in demand for homes, house prices could potentially increase post-Brexit.
Quality of education and job prospects are most likely to plummet. For many young Britons, the opportunity to study and work abroad will become limited. Graduates would have had the option to join a company abroad and the lack of freedom of movement will impede on this opportunity. Study abroad programmes as well as the diverse nature of staff in the education sector will fall dramatically, as it becomes less appealing. It could also mean that talented individuals are deterred from coming to the UK and having a positive effect on educating Britain’s youth. 125,000 EU students generate more than £2.2bn for the economy, not to mention to the funding of research from the EU for science will be at stake.
Another issue that will arise post-Brexit is a lack of investment. Professor Christopher Pissarides based at the London School of Economics has said that “The biggest negative impact will be felt over the next five years, but it will persist through the lack of investment and the weaker bargaining position that Britain will have in future negotiations.” Lack of investment will lead to less opportunity; it will have a negative effect on job prospects as many companies and individuals are hesitant to bring their business to the UK. Larger companies were not in favour of Brexit as it made it harder for them to move their money, people and their products around the world. With Brexit we may see a fall in economic growth as there will be a lack of young keen workers wanting to join the UK work force from abroad.
Although a large argument that won the ‘Leave’ campaign votes was that the money going into the EU could be better spent on the NHS, the opposite is actually true. As Brexit approaches, there will be more budget cuts. More importantly it will be a huge loss for the 60,000 EU members of the NHS staff that work just as tirelessly as all other members of the NHS staff.
The overall impact of Brexit on the younger generation is looking pretty bleak, with less job prospects and education opportunities, it will be this generation that suffers the most.