Den dubbla vanmaktens logik : En studie om långvarig arbetslöshet och socialbidragstagande bland unga vuxna

Sammanfattning: In the early 1990s a severe economic recession struck Sweden. The generation about to establish themselves on the labour market at this time were born in the mid seventies. They experienced unemployment and welfare dependency to a considerably higher extent than any previous generation in the modern Swedish welfare state. Despite the recovery of the Swedish economy a group of young adults, now in their mid thirties, simply could not find a way to either work, education or self-support. The aim of this dissertation is to study both actual living conditions and the experience of being unemployed and a social assistance recipient among those who remained in benefit dependency after the welfare crisis in the 1990s. The methodological approach is a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods. The empirical data is collected from 3 studies; longitudinal analyses of official register based data, a survey based on replication of official surveys and 74 interviews with long-term unemployed young adults. The statistical analyses state that there is a connection between early marginalisation and later marginalisation in this cohort. The analyses of the interviews indicated three central themes which the respondents perceived as the most problematic issues in relation to being long-term unemployed and a social assistance recipient. Those were troubled economical circumstances, shame and lacking social recognition due to receiving social assistance and feelings of powerlessness in relation to the social services. The analyses in this dissertation shows that young adults that have had severe labour market difficulties during their establishment phase often experience multiple deprivation and more problematic living conditions compared with the normal population of the same age. They often have a marginalized or excluded position on several welfare dimensions. It is also evident that many experience cultural and institutional exclusion.The young adults often have several obstacles that hindered them from finding employment and a source of income. A recurring empirical pattern is that the respondents have many different problems at the same time. This accumulation of different problems often contribute to feelings of powerlessness in trying to solve the extensive and simultaneous difficulties. A central understanding of this situation is that the respondents often lack the resources that could enhance their possibilities to employment. Powerlessness is experienced in relation to concrete hindrances but also in emotional and relational experiences. This can be described as a double powerlessness.