The ABC of Generation Z

Julieanne Strachan April 15, 2012

Harrison Mott with Kallyan Heng, Vivian Wei, Selina, Lina Wang.

Harrison Mott with Kallyan Heng, Vivian Wei, Selina, Lina Wang. Photo: Supplied

GENERATION Z - the new label has barely been born and already we are being told members of Generation Z are mooching off their parents, which has ignited warnings not to tar this new generation with the labels given to Generation Y.

Youth Coalition of the ACT director Emma Robertson said labels like ''selfish'' had long been attached to Generation Y, but it was often unfair.

''We tend to hear about this a lot in terms of moving from job to job and not having that loyalty to a employer,'' she said.

''But what we have really seen is a deregulation of the workforce. Many young people have been only ever been employed as casuals. We don't employ young people with the same kind of benefits [that previous generations had]. But we expect the same kind of loyalty.''

Business information analysts IBISWorld released a snapshot of the new Generation Z this week, defined as the people who were born in the early to mid 1990s.

It said that this new group was quick to give up their time to help others, with 27.2 per cent of them currently involved in some form of volunteer work. However, many of them were also receiving charity - at home.

IBISWorld Australia general manager Karen Dobie said: ''Young adults are generally well supported financially so long as their family is intact and across Generation Z that's increasingly common.'' An Australian Bureau of Statistics survey found that 64 per cent young adults received financial assistance from their parents.

Of those who received assistance, about 45 per cent had help paying their rent and about 49 per cent had help paying bills.

Marriage was not a priority, with women expected to marry at 29 and the men at 32.

Ms Robertson said research had found repeatedly that, when asked what issues they faced, young Australians listed mental health as one of their most pressing concerns.

''What we also know is that one in four young people aged under 25 will in any given year experience a mental health issue,'' she said. ''So that explains why it's always ranked in the top three issues for them. But just because they will experience a mental health issue does not mean it will be terrible. It does not have to be stigmatised.''