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Canadian Youth Facing Unprecedented Challenges Finding Quality Employment: CIBC

One in 10 young Canadians economically at risk

TORONTO, June 20, 2013 /CNW/ - Canadian youth are more educated than ever but are facing challenges their parents didn't and are increasingly struggling to find lasting and meaningful jobs, finds a new report from CIBC World Markets.

"The economic reality for youth today is very different than that of previous generations," says CIBC Deputy Chief Economist Benjamin Tal. "While young Canadians are resourceful and capable of adjusting to the pulse of an ever changing labour market, they are faced with problems unknown to their parents. The current environment of part-time work, temporary jobs, corporate and government restructuring and downsizing is especially tough on young people whose lack of experience and seniority make them much more vulnerable to labour market changes."

The CIBC report notes that while the youth unemployment rate is at its historical average, the ratio between youth unemployment and the unemployment rate for older Canadians is now at a record high. "With youth unemployment running at nearly 2.4 times that of Canadians aged 25 and older, one begins to see the growing challenges for younger Canadians to find lasting and meaningful work."

Mr. Tal, who delivered his report to a group of Grade 10 scholarship students from across the country in downtown Toronto today, notes that getting the right education is no longer enough. "While more education is positive, increasingly, students are completing their education without any work experience and are more likely to be caught in the no job-no experience, and no experience-no job cycle.

"In fact, one in five youth aged 15-24 not working today has never held a job. That is 40 per cent higher than the long-term average. Statistics show that youth who gain work experience and receive on the job training while studying are much more likely to find suitable and sustainable employment."

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