Backgrounder: Continuing Support for Youth Employment Strategies
With nearly 60% of students in Canada working an average of 18 hours per week while enrolled, working while studying has become the norm for Canadian students. Unfortunately, student earnings have not kept pace with the ever‐increasing price of pursing a post-secondary degree.
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For students working to fund their studies, employment prospects have actually continued to worsen. Unemployment rates since the last recession have yet to fully recover. In June 2014, the youth employment rate stood at nearly 14%, which is double that of the general population. Most growth in student employment tends to be concentrated in lower paying service industry jobs. As a result, students are working many hours, but gaining little meaningful work experience in return.
The Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) has put forward a policy paper asking for continued support by the federal government for youth employment strategies. While considerable efforts have been made to tackle this issue over the past decade, there remains a number of unresolved problems in the area of employment and underemployment of youth in Canada.
CASA supports a post-‐secondary system that is accessible, affordable, innovative and of the highest quality.