YOUTH PAYING A HIGH PRICE FOR THE OCCUPATION –a third unemployed –a quarter in poverty

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THE Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) has released a statistical review on the status of Palestinian youth that shows youth pay a heavy price of occupation.

Youth comprises one third of Palestinian Society.

The estimated population in the Palestinian Territory totalled 4.29 million in mid-2012 (50.8% male and 49.2% female) with a ratio of 103.2 males per 100 females.

Youth represents 29.8% of the total population: 40.2% of them are adolescents and 60.4% are youth. The sex ratio among youth is 104.3 males per 100 females.

More than a third of youth were unemployed during the first quarter 2012.

The data of labour force survey for the first quarter of 2012 showed that 36.6% of youth aged 15-29 years are economically active (employed and unemployed); 38.7% in the West Bank and 33.2% in the Gaza Strip.

The youth unemployment rate totaled in the Palestinian Territory at 35.7%.

The highest unemployment rate was 41.2% in the age group of 20-24 years compared with 29.3% for the age group of 25-29 years. In addition, 43.7% of those unemployed had completed at least 13 years schooling.

The services sector and its branches observed 30.4% of youth (15-29 years), while the commerce sector, restaurants, and hotels worked at 24.4% of that age group.

More than a quarter of youth in the Palestinian Territory suffered from poverty during the year of 2010.

The relative poverty line and the deep poverty line according to consumption patterns (for reference a household consisted of two adults and three children) in the Palestinian Territory in 2010 were 2,237 NIS, and 1,783 NIS respectively.

The poverty rate among Palestinian individuals was 25.7 (18.3% in the West Bank, and 38.0% in Gaza Strip).

14.9% of the individuals in the Palestinian Territory were suffering from deep poverty in 2010 according to consumption patterns. (8.8% in the West Bank, and 23.0% in Gaza Strip).

Marriage and divorce rates are higher among females aged 15-29.

According to the 2011 database of registered marriages and divorces, 92.3% of females were in the age group of 15-29 years are married compared to 81.0% of males.

78.5% of divorced females were aged between 15-29 years compared with 58.0% for divorced males.

44.8% of youth (15-29 years) were enrolled in education in 2011.

In 2011, 44.8% of youth aged 15-29 years were enrolled in education; 84.9% in the age group of 15-17 years, 50.8% in the age group of 18-22 years, and 11.9% in the age group of 23-29 years.

Dropout rates (both of those who were previously enrolled and left or failed to attend) were 29.7%; 34.2% for males and 24.9% for females.

In addition, 8.6% of males aged 15-29 years hold a university degree compared to 11.1% of females in the same age group.

A further 3.5% of males had not completed any educational stage compared to 1.7% of females in the age group of 15-29 years.

Furthermore, 0.7% of youth aged 15-29 years are illiterate; 0.8% males and 0.6% females.

The labour force survey data for the first quarter of 2012 showed that 156 thousand graduates in the age group of 15-29 years hold an associate diploma certificate and above.

Around 31,400 graduates specialized in Business and Administration. Law specialty had the lowest number of graduates with only around 2,700 graduates.

The unemployment rate among youth graduates was 50.5% in the first quarter of 2012.

The highest unemployment rate was 60.1% for graduates in education and teacher training, while the lowest unemployment rate of 33.7% was among law graduates.

Almost half of youth do not read newspapers and magazines.

Among 49.8% of youth aged 15-29 years in the Palestinian Territory do not read newspapers or magazines at all; 40.4% in the West Bank and 65.1% in Gaza Strip.

Also, 87.2% of youth in the Palestinian Territory watch television on a daily basis compared to 27.1% who listen to the radio daily, while 24.3% of youth use the Internet.

The majority of youth use the Computer.

Data on information technology during previous years indicated that there had been a remarkable development in indicators regarding access and the use of information and communication technology among young people in the age group of 15-29 years.

The data reported in 2011 showed that the proportion of young people who use the computer was 67.5% in the Palestinian Territory (70.4% in the West Bank and 62.7% in Gaza Strip), compared with 47.6% in 2004.

The gap among both sexes in using of computers narrowed to 69.8% among males compared to 65.0% among females in 2011.

43.0% of youth use e-mail.

In 2011, 42.9% of youth in the Palestinian Territory possessed an e-mail account (45.9% in the West Bank and 38.2% in Gaza Strip) compared with 14.3% in 2004. In 2011, 51.1% of males possessed an email account compared to 34.4% of females.

Three-quarters of youth use a mobile phone.

In 2011, the percentage of young people who own a mobile phone rose to 75.2% in the Palestinian Territory (79.4% in the West Bank against 68.5% in the Gaza Strip) compared to 34.9% in 2004.

This ratio varied significantly by gender with 86.3% among males and 63.7% among females owning a mobile phone according to data of 2011.

The majority of youth evaluated their health as good.

In the Palestinian Territory, 83.2% of youth aged 15-29 years evaluated their health as good; 86.3% of males and 80.1% of females.

Sport activities were being exercised regularly by 33.1% of youth; 35.6% in the West Bank and 29.0% in the Gaza Strip.

About three in every 100 youth suffered from one chronic disease at least.

In the Palestinian Territory, 2.8% of youth aged 15-29 years reported that they suffered from at least one chronic disease; 3.3% of males and 2.3% of females.

More than one quarter of Male youth smoke.

In the Palestinian Territory, 15.0% of youth in the age group of 15-29 years reported that they smoke; 28.7% male and 0.7% female.

Total fertility rate in Gaza Strip remains higher than the West Bank.

According to the final results of the Palestinian Family Survey of 2010, the total fertility rate in the Palestinian Territory declined to 4.1 births between (2008-2009) compared to 4.6 births in 2006.

At the region level, the total fertility rate in the West Bank between (2008-2009) was 3.8 birth compared with 4.9 birth in the Gaza Strip.

Females aged 25-29 years contribute 29.0% of the total fertility rate, the highest contributor of all age groups.