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Highlights from 360: Propelling Youth Employment in the GTA

Speakers: Nation Cheong, Margaret Eaton, Huda Bukhari, Othniel Litchmore, Vasiliki Bednar, Jaskaran Sandhu

Why are young people in the GTA struggling to find jobs, or meaningful jobs? What role can the public and private sectors play to solve the problem? A dynamic group of speakers, civic leaders, and the 6 Degrees-Toronto Pearson Youth Cohort gathered on Dec. 13, 2017 at Humber College to discuss the challenges of youth employment in the GTA, beginning with intimate conversations and concluding with an all-encompassing, interactive 360 with our invited experts.

Revelatory moments from the event include:

  • Huda Bukhari revealing race-tinged low expectations set by teachers, and noting how newcomer youth face additional barriers of new environment, language, and maybe trauma.
  • Nation Cheong noting that “democratizing” hasn’t worked out so well for all groups – maybe that shouldn’t be the answer to everything.
  • Vass Bednar advocating for blind hiring process: The new norm of networking for employment allows for more discrimination. Also, what’s so bad about young people living at home longer?
  • Margaret Eaton reminding us that 60% of job market is hidden
  • John Ralston Saul noting that our systems are still based on times when life expectancy rates were half of what they are now.

The 6 Degrees-Toronto Pearson Youth Cohort presented the 360 event. They are a group of 15 dynamic leaders aged 18-29 from the GTA who are committed to building a more inclusive city: Sanel Ahmic, Irum Anjum, Kayla Harvard, Fatima Hirsi, Jason Liu, Farah Mahmood, Malhar Memon (read his blog post here), Dina Nikitina, Jae Park, Sehaj Singh (read his blog post here), Jai Singh, Demas Soliman, Sharon Suresh, Ifrah Yousuf, Nathan Yu

Meet the Cohort:

Photo Gallery:

Photo: Alyssa K. Faoro/6 Degrees
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Notable Tweets:

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This event was sponsored by Toronto Pearson International Airport’s Propeller Project. The area surrounding Toronto Pearson is the second largest employment zone in Canada, second only to downtown Toronto. Yet, some of the neighbourhoods around the airport are facing unemployment rates higher than the provincial average. Through the Propeller Project, Toronto Pearson’s community investment program, we are investing in initiatives that address issues of unemployment and underemployment in the communities surrounding the airport. Toronto Pearson is proud to partner with the Institute of Canadian Citizenship in support of the Youth Cohort at 6 Degrees and contribute to lasting solutions that address youth unemployment in the neighbourhoods surrounding the airport.