The federal government announced it would cut its youth seasonal job sites across the country to save money. But what will the move cost Canada’s unemployed youth?
Every adult remembers their first job as a teenager. I flung fast food out of a drive-through window in one of the many fried chicken chains back home. The tribulations of fast food, retail or babysitting are common experiences many North Americans share. But Canadian teens now have one less resource to connect them to those summer jobs.
Ottawa announced Wednesday it would close its summer youth job centres across the country for the first time in 40 years. The centres first opened in 1968 to help connect students with employers in need of seasonal workers.
Shuttering the seasonal sites will save the federal government $6.5 million a year, but our youth unemployment hovers around 14.5 per cent. That’s twice the unemployment rate for the regular workforce. Is removing one more resource to help young people find jobs doing them or anyone else any favours?
The federal human resources department says it will redesign its youth website to provide better online resources in lieu of opening the centres. However, the department’s student and regular job banks haven’t worked for weeks due to an unspecified security breech. The lengthy delay in getting the job banks up and running again doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in the promised online resources.