It is unhelpful to see youth unemployment used to score political points says David Lowe, Employment Services Manager for the Employers & Manufacturers Association.
“The Starting Out Wage youth rates is undoubtedly helping provide jobs,” Mr Lowe said.
“Darien Fenton is toying with the issue by quoting some EMA survey data while ignoring other aspects of it.
“Our survey found 31 (6%) employers last year hired a young person because of youth rates.
“So some young people are getting jobs they would not otherwise get because of it.
“But while we are the first to acknowledge the policy is not a panacea it doesn’t make sense to scrap it when young people are getting jobs because of it.
“Youth unemployment is a major issue throughout the world; nobody has all the answers and New Zealand needs a multi-faceted approach to address it.
“Most of our political parties have some good ideas for addressing the issue but no one has a silver bullet and shouldn’t pretend they do.
“EMA has called on our politicians many times to stop the tit for tat on youth unemployment and combine their ideas.”