The total number of minors in absolute poverty in 2021 is equal to 1 million and 384 thousand: the incidence is confirmed high, at 14.2%, stable compared to 2020, but higher by almost three percentage points compared to 2019, when it was equal to 11.4%. Istat highlights this in the ninth edition of the Report on Fair and Sustainable Wellbeing (Bes) explaining that despite a changed economic scenario, absolute poverty remains stable, affecting more than 5 million 500 thousand individuals (9.4%). The North partially recovers the sharp increase in absolute poverty observed in the first year of the pandemic, although it does not return to the levels observed in 2019 (6.8%, 9.3% and 8.2% in 2019, 2020 and 2021 respectively).
In 2021 in the South the poor people are growing by almost 196 thousand units and higher and increasing incidences of poverty are confirmed, reaching 12.1% for individuals (it was 11.1% in 2020). Finally, the Center has the lowest value, although also in this area of the country the incidence increases among individuals, going from 6.6% in 2020 to 7.3% in 2021.
The mental health of the very young worsens
In 2021 there is a deterioration in the conditions of mental well-being among 14-19 year olds. In this age group, the score (measured on a scale in hundredths) dropped to 66.6 for girls (-4.6 points compared to 2020) and to 74.1 for boys (-2.4 points compared to to 2020). In fact, it increases the percentage of adolescents in poor mental health (score of the mental health indicator below the first quintile of distribution, equal to 52 points), which goes from 13.8% in 2019 to 20.9% in 2021. Istat highlights this in the ninth edition of the Wellbeing Report fair and sustainable (Bes).
In 2020 the country with the highest number of deaths
In 2020 Italy is among the countries with the highest number of deaths per population (1,236 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants compared to the European average of 1,161 deaths). This also depends on the fact that Italy is the oldest country in Europe; in fact, by eliminating the differences between countries in the age structure, Italy falls to the bottom of the European ranking (standardized mortality rate equal to 933 deaths per 100 thousand inhabitants against an EU27 average of 1,040). In 2021 the excess mortality follows a similar trend, with a peak between March and May and one from October, these are less pronounced peaks than in 2020.
The third pandemic peak was reached on average in April 2021 (+ 12.4% on average in the EU27), when in Italy the variation in standardized mortality rates compared to 2015-2019 stood at non-negligible values (+ 17.9% ) but much lower than that observed in 2020. The fourth pandemic peak is reached at the beginning of December 2021 (+ 24.1%), with more pronounced excess mortality in Eastern European countries.
With Covid, employment worsens
The pandemic has led to a worsening of employment levels in our country and a further increase in the distance with the EU27 average. Specifically, according to Istat, with the pandemic in the second quarter of 2020, the 20-64 year-old employment rate fell sharply: on the European average -1.9 percentage points compared to the previous quarter, but in Italy it reaches – 3 percentage points and, even more, in Spain (-4.5 percentage points). The EU27 returns to pre-pandemic employment levels (last quarter 2019) in the second quarter of 2021, while in Italy this occurs in the fourth quarter. The disadvantage between Italy and the EU27 average, already maximum compared to all the countries before the pandemic, is further amplified, going from -9 percentage points in the fourth quarter of 2019 to -11 points in the first half of 2021.
Busier than in 2020
2021 marks a partial recovery in employment lost in 2020 (+128 thousand employed among people aged 20-64 on an annual average) and the recovery was stronger for women, who were also the most affected subjects in 2020. the effects of the pandemic on the labor market. The employment rate between 20 and 64 years it rises to 62.7% (+0.8 percentage points), but still remains below the pre-pandemic level. However, the dynamics show a progressive improvement over the course of the year and in the fourth quarter of 2021 the employment rate returns higher than that of 2019 (+0.4 points).
More marked recovery for women and young people
The recovery in 2021 was more marked for women (+1.1 percentage points on 2020 compared to + 0.6 points for men), young people (+2.1 points among the 20-34 year-olds compared to +1, 0 between 35-49 year olds and +0.1 between 50-64 year olds) and foreigners (+1.5 compared to +0.8 of Italians), who were the most affected by the 2020 crisis. , which have already decreased due to the worst effects of the pandemic on the central-northern regions, continue to decline and in the South the employment rate returns to the levels – albeit low – of 2019 (48.5%).
Among graduates, the recovery in 2021 was more intense compared to other levels of education and the employment rate reaches 79.2% (+1.5 points). Istat also shows that women between 25 and 49 are employed in 73.9% of cases if they do not have children, while they are in 53.9% if they have at least one child under the age of 6. However, the most difficult situation remains in the South, where only 35.3% of women with young children work, almost half compared to the Center (62.7%) and the North (64.3%).
Blangiardo: “21,782 graduates lost in the South”
“Youth policies, in our aging country, have rarely received priority attention and adequate resources. The framework provided by the Bes indicators suggests that it is time to change strategy. Out of any rhetoric, it can be said that welfare policies of young people are, today more than ever, policies for the wellbeing of the whole country “, commented the president of Istat, Gian Carlo Blangiardo, on the occasion of the presentation of the ninth edition of the Report on Fair and Sustainable Wellbeing (Bes), underlining that “to the most educated and qualified young people, Italy does not yet offer adequate opportunities”.
In particular, explains Blangiardo, “despite the mobility restrictions imposed during the first year of the pandemic, and the uncertainty that characterized 2020, emigration abroad of young Italian graduates has intensified compared to 2019, in clear contrast to the transfer of residence of the population as a whole. The main directions of the flows of young graduates continue to be towards foreign countries and from the South to the Center-North. The balance of migrations of Italian citizens aged 25-39 with a university-level qualification closes with a balance of transfers of residence to and from abroad of -14,528 units. In particular, the South of Italy lost 21,782 young graduates in 2020 alone “.
Smarter working especially in the North and for women
In 2021 it continues the use of work from home as a tool for continuing production activities while limiting risks to public health. The share of employees who worked from home at least one day a week, which was 4.8% in 2019, goes from 13.8% in 2020 to 14.8%. This mode of work it mainly involves women (17.3% compared to 13% of men), those employed in the Center and North (respectively 17.7% and 15.9% compared to 10.5% in the South) and those with a high level of education who more than one in three experience working from home.