Young And Unemployed

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - 11:08am

Study finds young adults are hit hardest by weak job market.

A new Pew Research Center survey found those people between the ages of 18 and 24 have had it the toughest in the weak economy.

In fact, only 54-percent of that demographic is employed - the lowest since the government began collecting data after World War II.

Dane Vecchio studied massage therapy, but now he's considering going in a different direction.

"I've been looking for about four months right now," Vecchio said. "The cut-off age, I believe, is like 28 to get into the Coast Guard. So I kind of want to get into that before it's no longer an option."

Johnie Winkler says she got a job three days after moving to Fort Myers, Florida.

"I don't think it's as bas as what they make it out to be," she said.

Even with the income, she says she can barely pay her bills and doesn't think about having children anytime soon.

"Diapers. Do you know how expensive they are? Like, they're so expensive. I could never afford all that, so I know it definitely makes me not want to have any kids," Winkler said.

It's also affecting other life decisions as well.

Thirty-one-percent of those surveyed said they'd postponed getting married or having a baby because of the weak economy.

One-in-four young adults have moved back in with their parents after being on their own, a situation Fort Myers resident Zoe Merring calls less than ideal.

"You have the option of living with your parents, which doesn't really allow you to be independent and get that experience down," she said.

The Pew survey found adults over 65 have weathered the financial storm the best.

Fort Myers resident Heather Mairn said she thinks she knows why.

"There are still things that my grandpa said that I still - you know, you have cash and once the cash is gone, you don't have money anymore," she said.

She says that's a stark truth - no matter what your age may be.

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