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Greece's Unemployed Young: A Great Depression Steals the Nation's Future

Nearly 30 percent of the country is out of work, but the real damage goes even deeper
Tina Stratigaki, jobless since January, spends two hours a day looking for work. She’s had nine interviews but no offers. “I sit with my computer, searching, searching, searching”
Tina Stratigaki, jobless since January, spends two hours a day looking for work. She’s had nine interviews but no offers. “I sit with my computer, searching, searching, searching”Photograph by Finn Taylor

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Outside an unmarked green metal door in the hallway of a suburban Athens high school, Tina Stratigaki waits for a job interview. It’s a Tuesday in mid-July. Stratigaki, 29, applied for the job as a social worker weeks ago and had taken an hour-long test the Friday before. Based on the list of applicants posted on the wall outside the exam, she estimates there were some 2,000 candidates for 21 open positions. This is the last interview she’s likely to get before Greece shuts down for the summer holidays. Her unemployment benefits—about €360 ($475) a month from her previous job working with disadvantaged women and children—have just run out. “I’m a little bit stressed,” she says.