Representatives of the ruling party, government and presidential office agreed in a meeting Thursday to each set up new “control towers” to coordinate and manage youth policies that are scattered across ministries.
A new office for youth policies will be opened at the Blue House, while the government launches a committee to coordinate and manage jobs, housing and welfare policies for the youth.
Democratic Party of Korea floor leader Hong Young-pyo said in the beginning of the meeting that his party will work with opposition parties to pass a bill that will be the legal basis for all youth policies as early as possible.
Cho Jeong-shik, chief of the party’s policy committee, said youth policies will be well reflected in next year’s budget plans.
The Democratic Party’s supreme council member Kim Hae-young said his party will proactively support young people’s participation in politics at the parliamentary elections next year.
“The eventual solution to issues facing youth is resolving polarization,” Kim said.
“It is also important to resolve inequalities in education and reduce spending in private education. We should all work on improving the taxation and welfare systems to let a social safety net function.”
Roh Hyung-wook, chief of the Office for Government Policy Coordination, said the government will set up a committee for coordination of youth policies and a secretariat to support it.
“There has been a lack of connectivity in the youth policies enforced by different ministries. We will now enforce them in a comprehensive and systematic manner,” Roh said.
“The youth will no longer be merely beneficiaries, but also a subject in policymaking.”
Lee Yong-sun, senior presidential secretary for civic society, said the new presidential secretary for youth policies will plan policies and strengthen communication with young people.
The office of the new presidential secretary is likely to comprise people aged 34 or below, or “youth” as defined in the draft for the Framework Act for the Youth that the rival parties agreed upon last year.
By Kim So-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org