Youth support wage subsidy - survey

2012-05-23 16:31

Cape Town - Three-quarters of young South Africans support the idea of a youth wage subsidy, a recent survey has found.

They believe it would make it easier for young people to find jobs, help the economy grow, and solve the problem of unemployed youth.

In addition, most respondents (44%) disagreed with the Congress of SA Trade Unions' (Cosatu's) stance against the wage subsidy.

At the same time, most also expressed dissatisfaction with the Democratic Alliance's decision to march on Cosatu House.

TNS South Africa, in conjunction with FSMS, polled 538 young people on the subsidy between May 16 and 20 this year in a short cellphone survey.

Those who responded were mostly those likely to be affected most - aged under 24 years (55%) - with a further 27% aged 25 to 30 years.

The results showed that 77% supported the idea, 11% did not, and 12% gave a "don't know" response.

Among those supporting the idea, 80% were aged 16 to 24 years, while the support dropped somewhat to 66% for those aged 31 years and over.

There were only minor differences across the different language groups and no gender differences.

Some 96% of the respondents agreed it was important to solve the problem of unemployed youth and 73% agreed a youth wage subsidy would make it easier for young people to find jobs.

Some 65% also agreed a youth wage subsidy would help the economy grow.

Conversely, 42% agreed the subsidy would be a further burden to taxpayers, 24% disagreed, and 34% responded with "don't know".

Some concern (19%) was also expressed that the subsidy would put people who had jobs at risk of losing them, 43% disagreed, and 37% said "don't know".

Furthermore, 31% agreed that under the subsidy young people would not be paid what they were worth, while 32% disagreed and 37% again said "don't know".

On the roles of Cosatu and the DA, who had been at loggerheads about the wage subsidy, only 25% agreed that Cosatu was correct in opposing the subsidy while 44% disagreed.

The trade union federation was also accused by 36% of respondents of not caring about the problem of unemployed youth while finding favour with 33%.

Equally, 40% felt that the DA should not have marched on Cosatu House last week as opposed to 27% who disagreed and 33% who said "don't know".

Among those who disagreed with the DA, 44% spoke a black African language as their home language.

The respondents in the survey consisted of 411 blacks and 127 people of other race groups.

  • Themba - 2012-05-23 16:56

    They do not even know what this youth subsidy is. It should be explained in detail. My guess is that this is simply a way to return tax money to companies. I do not understand why companies should be paid to employ. Who will benefit from employment? Companies first, youth second and government last, yet government should pay the bill of employment - really does not make sense. Companies should simply have solid succession planning and no money should be paid to them. Some older guys do not want to train younger people and do not even want to go on pension, they want to die in office just like Mugabe!

      wayne.bayman - 2012-05-23 17:24

      I've spend time as an employee and as and employer. Currently I'm 28, I was probably one of the last few people to do an apprenticeship. If it was not for that i would not have been a senior manager for my employer. I lost my work a few years ago and i started my own busisness. One of the people i did work for decided to hire me on a permanent basis. No skincolour involved, just plain old good service and work ethic. Both things a school cant teach you. The fact is that someone who has just walked out of school is nearly unemployable. The Skills development levy is used for crap and it does not work. Just BTW, money is not given back to the company, the money is simply tax deductable. At least that is how i understand the draft legislation is drawn up. On the other hand, workers wont be paid less. A worker will still earn R4000 a month from the company, the only difference is that government will 'refund' that company with R1000 per month. Again, that is how i understand the legislation. - 2012-05-23 17:30

      Who pays for Government Themba? Companies. Who pays salaries Themba? Companies. Maybe when we make it better for companies to do business then everyone will benifit.

      Alan - 2012-05-23 17:33

      (Alan2) This system has worked very well in overseas countries, giving young people experience, a salary and a stepping stone into better positions. Cosatu oppose it because they will not get their cut. At the moment, union membership is declining because unions have pushed wages so high that SA companies become uncompetitive and close, retrenching workers. Cosatu's approx. R120 000 000 per month ripoff from about 2 million workers is reducing, and they HATE the thought of people being employed without paying Cosatu their cut. That's why they oppose the subsidy, nothing else.

      Sandile - 2012-05-24 07:27

      It is important not to isolate the youth wage subsidy from economics in general. Economics work on assumptions. One of those assumptions (ceteris paribus) \everything remaining equal\. With everything remaining equal, the youth wage subsidy would not work..... Dont hav to spell out what wud remain equal or the same now.

  • Deon - 2012-05-23 17:29

    @ Themba. I cannot help noticing that your are most proberly part of the group that is so use to receiving free money without doing any work. Just remember, companies provide work and if you really want to dig deep, why should anyone including companies pay any tax to the government? The government are a bunch of leeches that sucks you dry and keeping the masses at ground level to keep on voting for them. Government is not use to working and adopt the principle where there is companies making money, the ashtray sindrome quickly pops up with the begging hand. COMPANIES AND TAX PAYERs DO NOT OWE GOVERNMENT OR ANYONE in that regards money. We are force to hand our money over and that SHOULD STOP NOW. Look at the fat bunch of people in government, everyone looking after its own interest. Everyone got a hand in tenders, directorships in other companies and stealing money that was suppose to go to the poor. So, you are well off, let people decide for themselve if they want to work for less money. Any money is better than no money. If you don't like, get a other job.

      Themba - 2012-05-23 17:59

      How can you receive money without work?... Ok, pay no taxes and have no roads, no clean water , no nothing. I do not think we should be this bitter about paying taxes. Although life is not perfect but we should think about the number of people we have to spread our taxes over. The ultimate is to continue to fight embezzlement of funds and create more job opportunities so that we can have a bigger tax basket.

  • tshekiso.saul - 2012-05-23 17:38

    It would greatly come as no surprise if the youth surveyed are from WC. And who would be the beneficiary. The economy or the companies in question. This is similar to training and development subsidy. Very weak strategy. - 2012-05-23 18:08

      Isn't it the duty of Government to train and develop its population. What are schools, universities and technicons? No one on the other side has given a logical refute of this policy. Only ideolocial.

  • Lebo - 2012-05-23 17:38

    Someone with Vavi's e-mail address (if he has one) send him the view of the youth across the country.

  • Tax - 2012-05-23 17:54

    With Cosatu and the cANCer calling the shots the youth have no future prospects.

  • dineo.siko - 2012-05-24 06:55

    Perhaps the question the should be, where has Youth subsidy in a middle income country ever worked? My view is that both parties are making a legitimate argument when it comes to youth employment. Its interesting when people who have always supported liberal policies are today blaming the government for not going enough to create any form of employment. The reality in South Africa is that, the economic structure of country has to change, industries have to change the ways of operating and relying on cheap labour to build their companies. Labour laws were created to protect labour from exploitation and that's a reality of that we all have to live in. This matter will remain a contested issue for many years to come, unless we as South Africans take a decisive decision to fight the poor education system (from primary to tertiary), we don't keep our leaders accountable to us and we continue to justify their wrongs. In conclusion, The. Youth Subsidy remains a quick fix to a bigger problem.

      Allan - 2012-05-24 11:32

      Dineo - Low output = low wages and the same high output = high wages. German and Japanese salaries are among the highest in the world but they are also the most productive. For a business to survive its all about the unit cost of production. Yes the education system has much to do with it and we cannot continue as we are at present. Germany has a very extensive apprenticeship system which provides highly skilled and productive labour to keep them competitive. The subsidy is just a very small component of what is required to become competitive and to be able to grow the job market

  • thabotabz - 2012-05-24 16:09

    Most Public Enterprises hire new recruit using that wage subsidy. I was on such a program, 5 five months later i decided to quit from the program without knowing where i was going to work (However i believed that was i had to do to get my career on the track again). It must first be established how the skills are going to be transfered that must be the basic argument in the proposal. Many gradutes sit in government offices doing nothing cause the is no maodel and or plan to guide the skills transfomation. Youth Subsidy must me implemented to promote grown future major economy players, but not lower employment.

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