Delegate: Mr. Duarte
1. Mr. Duarte (Portugal), speaking on behalf of Portuguese youth, said that Portugal had done much to help young people adapt to changes in the social, economic and cultural environment, encouraging young workers and students to go abroad to pursue their recreational activities, their studies or their career, supporting young entrepreneurs, and promoting information and communication technologies to create a knowledge society without exclusion. Its youth policies and programmes were based on the principles of action set forth in the Lisbon strategy, and there were two public agencies responsible for monitoring them. However, with the current crisis Portuguese youth were finding their entry into adult life complicated by the problem of finding skilled employment, decent working conditions and affordable housing. On the education front, the Government needed not only to combat failure and dropout rates but also to reform the higher education system in order to promote equality of opportunities. Young Portuguese were already able to participate in local decision-making through local youth councils, but they were insisting on the creation of regional councils where they could engage in dialogue with regional, national and international decision makers.
2. The young people of Portugal believed that policies and programmes targeted at them must be pursued with the involvement of youth organizations, local communities, schools, sporting clubs, authorities at all levels, and all other stakeholders. They were asking the United Nations and its Member States to commit themselves, on behalf of youth, by implementing a worldwide cross-sectoral policy for improving the situation of youth and reinforcing their role in society.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/64/SR.3