NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Millennials in New York City earn about 20 percent less than the previous generation of young workers and are likely to continue struggling from the effects of the recession, according to a new report.
The recession saddled people born between 1985 and 1996 with more debt than their parents and fewer high-paying jobs as housing costs have grown in the city, the report from City Comptroller Scott Stringer found.
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Stringer said too many millennials aren’t getting a fair chance to make it in the city.
“Millennials were applying for jobs in the most difficult economic climate since the Great Depression and as a result, a growing number are now working in low-wage industries and earning less than their predecessors,” Stringer said. “This group of young people is confronting unique economic challenges that their parents did not have to face.”
According to the report, 72 percent of people between the ages of 23 and 29 have earned some college credit, and many end up taking on massive student debt.
The percentage of millennials with a bachelor’s degree working in low-wage jobs went up 10 percent — from 23 to 33 — between 2000 and 2014, the report found. Overall, the percentage of millennials working in retail, food service and hospitality went up 4 points in the same time period.
Jackie Taylor got out of school in 2010 when the economy was tanking and finding a job was a struggle.
“I thought I’m smart, I have a good education, I’m going to be able to get a job, and then once I actually got out there it was the total opposite,” she told 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck. “It sometimes can be embarrassing. I just feel disappointing to myself, my parents.
The report found the average working 23-year-old in the city brought in about $23,500 in 2014, compared with about $27,700 in 2000.
“This generation is at a crossroads,” Stringer said. “They worked hard, got an education and then faced roadblocks to getting a good-paying job. It’s time for us to pay attention to the largest generation in New York City, and start to break down those barriers. We need to foster an economy here that helps young people get ahead, not one that holds them back.”
He suggests taking several steps including raising the minimum wage and creating more affordable housing.
“Millennials are doing their part for New York City – they are politically involved, culturally engaged, and highly motivated,” said Comptroller Stringer. “Now it’s time for the rest of us to do our part and put policies in place that will help this powerful group settle down in New York City, start their careers, and raise families here, so our economy can continue to grow.”
The U.S. Census data shows millennials represented about 1 in 5 city residents in 2014.
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