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Young Invincibles and National Priorities Project Release Report Highlighting Devastating Impact of Fiscal Showdown Cuts on Young Adults

November 15, 2012
Rae Roca

Young Invincibles and National Priorities Project Release Report Highlighting Devastating Impact of Fiscal Showdown Cuts on Young Adults

[WASHINGTON, DC] – Young Invincibles and National Priorities Project released “A Fight for the Future: Education, Job Training, and The Fiscal Showdown,” a report detailing how the looming fiscal battle could severely threaten key investments in job training and education. The original analysis also compares the scale of the challenges in educating the next generation of Americans to actual investments in the education and training of young adults, showing that our federal budget falls far short of the investment needed. The report also compares expenditures on training and education to other budget items like defense and tax cuts for the wealthy.

The report illustrates the following:

  • The federal government currently spends more annually on the war in Afghanistan than on education even though the US has fallen from 1st to 12th in college educational attainment globally.
  • The federal government cut $1 billion from job training for disadvantaged youth over the past decade. Currently, underfunded training programs reach fewer than 5 percent of the 6.7 million disconnected youth.
  • Currently, disconnected youth cost $93 billion per year in social services and lost revenue, but we spend less than $3 billion per year on education and training of this population.
  • Looming automatic budget cuts, known as “sequestration,” will cost thousands of youth jobs in 2013. Cuts from sequestration could pull nearly $40 million dollars from AmeriCorps alone in 2013.

“Our generation is up against enormous challenges: high youth unemployment, rising college costs, and growing student debt, all of which create barriers to economic opportunity,” said Rory O’Sullivan, Director of Policy for Young Invincibles.  “Despite this fact, the federal government has consistently slashed funding for employment and training services that prepare young people for the 21st century economy. Further disinvestment would have severe consequences for our future.” 

Mattea Kramer of National Priorities Project added, “Budgets are about choices. This report makes clear that we are reducing investment in education and training despite the fact that those kinds of spending return the investment many times over. Policymakers should weigh this carefully as key decisions await them in the weeks ahead.”

Upcoming budget negotiations are a chance to realign spending and tax policies and focus on investing in young people—our nation’s future.

To read the entire report, visit


About the National Priorities Project:
National Priorities Project (NPP) is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that makes our complex federal budget transparent and accessible so people can exercise their right and responsibility to influence how their tax dollars are spent. NPP believes the U.S. federal budget will reflect the values and priorities of a majority of Americans when all people have the opportunity and ability to participate in shaping our nation’s budget.

About Young Invincibles:
Young Invincibles (YI) is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that seeks to amplify the voices of young Americans and expand opportunity for our generation. YI engages in education, policy analysis, and advocacy on the issues that matter most to this demographic, including health care, education, and economic opportunity. We work to ensure that the perspectives of young people are heard wherever decisions about our collective future are being made.