Jobless Gen Y: Young, unemployed and giving up hope

David  March 9, 2012

Alyshah Hasham
Staff Reporter

Toronto Star

“Set the bar low,” is the advice Ron Sly would give himself a year and a half ago, when he started looking for work in Toronto.

But back then it was a city of opportunity, where he’d get a stable job and become upwardly mobile.

Instead the 26-year-old, armed with a useless B.Sc. in biology, spent months job-hunting while working at a bar.

“I couldn’t go back to school, I couldn’t take on any more debt,” he said. For the last year he’s worked on short-term contract as communications coordinator at First Work, a not-for-profit organization helping youth find employment.

He likes his job, but it would be nice to live like you know where next month’s rent is coming from.

“There is still the stress of being unsure about the future. There just isn’t the stability and job security that was enjoyed by previous generations. That is for me the biggest let down.”

Sly is part what could become a “lost generation,” says TD economist Francis Fong. “There is the threat of it taking half a decade to a decade or even longer to get these people back to where they should have been had they been the same age in an economic boom year.”

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