Crispen Chinguno


Bailing Out Capital or Diffusing a Time Bomb? The Question of Youth Wage Subsidy in South Africa

Unemployment is one of the major challenges in post-apartheid South Africa. Using the broad definition, unemployment has persisted at over 40% for years. For the youth, however, it is more alarming at over 70%, or even higher for black youth. The youth thus constitutes the highest proportion of those in the dangerous class as postulated by Standing (2011). This represents a crisis that requires urgent intervention. Employers often eschew the youth for a number of reasons, including lack of job experience. One of the strategies proposed to address this is the introduction of an employer wage subsidy to encourage them to hire more youths. This, however, has been contentious as those opposed to the policy view it as a subsidy to employers. I review the introduction of the employer wage subsidy as intervention to youth unemployment in South Africa. 

Part of ¡No Mas! Strategies and Alternatives



Crispen Chinguno (University of Witwatersrand)

Crispen Chinguno is a PhD Fellow at the International Centre for Development and Decent Work (ICDD) at the Society, Work, and Development Research Institute (SWOP) at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. His research areas are labor studies, trade unions, social movements, working class agency, labor and development, and the sociology of violence. He has recently published articles in the Review of the African Political Economy, British Journal of Industrial Relations, Journal of Workplace Rights, Juridikum, Peripherie, Global Labour Journal, and the South African Labour Bulletin.

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