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Addressing underemployment among newcomers and other groups

Toronto Pearson, in collaboration with Deloitte, released of a white-paper titled Uncovering Underemployment: Tapping into the Potential of our Workforce. It explores the causes of underemployment wherein skilled people do not occupy jobs that call on them to use the full breadth of their skills and education and makes recommendations on ways to address it.

“The area surrounding Pearson International airport is the second-largest economic zone in the entire country,” said Hillary Marshall, Vice President of Stakeholder Relations at the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA). “Opportunities abound right here in our backyard, but we need to take steps to ensure that residents are working in jobs that suit their experience and level of education.”

“To ensure Canada continues to be an inclusive and prosperous place to live, we must remain committed to providing opportunities,” said Gianni Ciufo, Partner, Civil Government & National Social Finance Leader, Deloitte Canada. 

A number of factors can contribute to underemployment, including the unemployment rate, how many individuals in a given community have post-secondary education and the evolution of the economy as machines take over more and more jobs that have repetitive tasks as a main feature. The whitepaper indicates that individuals and communities from certain demographic and socioeconomic groups are disproportionally likely to find themselves in a state of underemployment. Women, youth, new Canadians, low income earners, persons living with disabilities, indigenous people and members of the LGBTQ+ community are among those who may be at risk to be underemployed.

The whitepaper discusses a variety of actions to tackle the problem, including:

• Facilitating more engagement with employers in the design and development of programs that better maximize the use of workers skills.

• Enhancing wraparound support services in employment programs to ensure that people successfully integrate into the labour market.

• Alternative, longer-term, more flexible funding models for programs relating to underemployment.

• New research and metrics to both better understand the scope and scale of the problem, and also measure the effectiveness of new programs and interventions.

More info at www.torontopearson.com/propellerproject. 

– Greater Toronto Airports Authority    

Posted: Jan 4, 2020

February 2020

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