More than a third of young Tasmanians who responded to a poverty survey say they have stolen food to survive.
Described as confronting and shocking, The Real Youth Survival Report, co-ordinated by Colony 47, will be used to pressure the federal government to increase Newstart and the Youth Allowance.
In a rare show of tri-partisanship, Human Services Minister Roger Jaensch, Labor's Alison Standen and Greens leader Cassy O'Connor joined Colony 47 chief Danny Sutton in urging action on youth poverty.
Kyle Rowbottom, 21, of Lenah Valley, who drafted questions for the survey told of young people stealing food to survive and the challenges of surviving on $40 a day.
"It's been hard working over a couple of weeks to be the voice of the young ones struggling with meals who have to force themselves to walk in somewhere and push themselves to steal food or a meal to survive for the next days," Mr Rowbottom said.
"You know it was remarkable that people actually answered it [the question about stealing food] and we got a lot of feedback that they're struggling.
"There's plenty more that I know that haven't answered questions but I think they're just scared to get their voices out there.
"It's heart warming to be here to stand up for the young ones and push forward so we can get a voice out."
Mr Rowbottom, who lives with his grandmother, said he left school before finishing year 10, was learning to drive and while struggling to find work was hopeful of fulfilling his dream to become a chef.
The report, by unemployed Tasmanians aged between 15 and 24, was based on a survey ahead of Anti-Poverty Week.
In four weeks, there were 66 responses to 16 questions and 36 per cent of respondents said they stole food because they were hungry, 84 per cent said they were living in financial stress and 47 per cent said their financial situation put them at risk of homelessness. Two-thirds of respondents said they faced barriers in finding work because of their financial situation.
Mr Jaensch fell short of supporting a rise in Newstart and Youth Allowance but said the federal government should listen to the concerns of young people in the report.
Mr Sutton said Anti-Poverty Week would focus on young people and the "confronting" report.
"This report should open the eyes of everyone who reads it," Mr Sutton said.
"It contains the very real and compelling views of young people about the challenges in their lives that are created by financial stress.
"The knock-on effects are profound, ranging from homelessness to poor nutrition to lack of transport options, unemployment and dropping out of the education system."
Mr Jaensch said governments had to listen to young people.
"The people who have written that report and the people that they have drawn from are the experts in their own lives," he said.
"We've got to listen to what they have to say.
"The government in Canberra needs to be listening to the voices of young people in making any future decisions [about Newstart and Youth Allowance].
"I don't challenge any of the accounts that those young people have put forward."
Ms Standen said the report showed how difficult it was for young people to find housing and urged Mr Jaensch to lobby for an increase in payments for young people.
"It clearly paints a picture of young people being stretched beyond their means of sometimes resorting to desperate things like stealing food, having insecure accommodation and struggling to find a roof over their heads," she said.
"I think that having a roof over a person's head secure accommodation from which to access further education and work is a fundamental human right."
Ms O'Connor said the report was "deeply confronting".
"When you read those stories of the young people who contributed to that report there's a sense of being forgotten. They're disillusioned, some of them are despairing because of poverty."