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Youth unemployment could cause 'lost generation'

It can be tough for young people to land a solid full time job but recent numbers have some fearing they could soon be known as the ‘lost generation.’

In the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area 83,000 people between the age of 15 and 24 are not in school, unemployed and have no prospect of a job, according to a new report from the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance.

“This is not a new crisis, this is a growing problem,” CivicAction CEO Sevaun Palvetzian said. “We really do risk having a potentially lost generation.”

Palvetzian said the youth unemployment number is hitting 20 per cent, which is almost three times the national average. But that percentage is higher for some groups.

Aboriginal youth unemployment is at 25 per cent and is as high as 30 per cent in the black community.

Palvetzian says part of the problem is that many young people don’t have the proper role models to knock on doors and network with companies to help them find jobs in which they can build a career.

She adds that the report found many youth don’t know how to use modern technology to their advantage when searching for a job, such as employment and networking websites.