Backpedaling on APL: Unef denounces “an oversight and neglect of young people”

Backpedaling on APL: Unef denounces “an oversight and neglect of young people”

“We are particularly surprised to see that one day we are told a helping hand and the next day it is withdrawn”, denounces the student union, which asks first to be consulted, then “structural responses”.

Mélanie Luce, the president of UNEF, November 18, 2019 (JACQUES DEMARTHON / AFP)

Emmanuel Macron announced Wednesday exceptional assistance for six weeks of 150 euros with 100 euros more per child for beneficiaries of the active solidarity income (RSA) and personalized housing assistance (APL), “What affects all young people, 18-35 years old”, he had assured. But ultimately, APL beneficiaries will receive 100 euros per child but not the basic 150 euros, unlike RSA recipients. Very few people under 25 will therefore receive this assistance. “We are particularly surprised to see that one day we are told a helping hand and the next day it is taken away from us”, reacts Friday, October 16 on franceinfo Mélanie Luce, the president of the UNEF. “This shows that there is an oversight and neglect of young people. We must go beyond speeches ”.

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franceinfo: What do you think?

Melanie Luce:We are particularly surprised to see that one day we are told a helping hand and the next day we are withdrawn. It reminds us very strongly of what happened in May. In May, we were told two types of aid, aid of 200 euros for students who have lost their jobs and aid of 200 euros for beneficiaries of APLs. This aid could not be received by the students because there was already an exclusion of the students. So, when Jean Castex tells us that it will be the same help as during the confinement, we are particularly worried because since the confinement, many young people have had zero euros from the State.

Is it a boondoggle or a broken promise?

It is a broken promise because when the president speaks, normally, his words are authentic. This shows that there is an oversight and neglect of young people. We must go beyond speeches. We’re a little fed up with self-pity. Self-pity and compassion are great, but if there is no act behind it, it is useless. Concretely, why is it hard to be young in 2020? Because we have a government which for several years lowered APLs, deindexed them from the rent revision index, our rents have increased but our aid has been frozen and our stock markets have been frozen. All these measures have made us precarious.

What are you asking for?

He is asked to rectify the situation.

We have been talking about announcements since Monday but we have not been contacted for that. We are asking for structural answers. Access to the RSA must be given to at least 25 years of age for all young people who are unemployed, without training. We must reform scholarships to allow more students to reach them and substantially increase APL. It requires money that has not been put on the table for young people.

What impact will the curfew have on students?

It’s going to look like a loss of income. Odd jobs will be very affected, especially fast food where a lot of students work or babysitting. Sanitary measures are necessary but the state must take measures to compensate.