June 24, 2024

The Queens County Citizen

Complete Canadian News World

Fewer jobs for young people

Fewer jobs for young people

Hit hard by labor shortages over the past two years, the majority of companies, especially in the catering and retail business, have hired people who offer themselves on the spot.

This year it won't be easy. There are definitely positions to fill, but a young person who wants to work this summer must come with a good CV.

Anthony St-Hilaire, 14, wants to earn some money this summer. “It gives me pocket money and allows me to put some aside,” he explains.

In his CV, he wrote about his strong motivation to work and household chores such as mowing the lawn.

He gave his CV to grocers in his neighborhood, but he has yet to hear back. “When I brought my CV, I was told there was almost no room left. And the young people who are currently working are older,” he noted.

According to Statistics Canada, the unemployment rate among Quebec students aged 15 to 19 increased from 6.3% to 11.5% between December 2023 and April 2024.

This increase is due to, among other things, the economic situation. This has led to closures or reductions in opening hours. And operators aren't expecting a big improvement in ridership this summer.

“We're hoping for a good summer, but not to the point of changing the opening hours,” suggests Martin Vezina, vice-president of public and government affairs for the Association Restaurant Quebec (ARQ).

New law and immigration

The Quebec government also changed the law on youth work. New guidelines for under 14s and 14-16s are stopping many businesses.

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Jack, age 13 in 2023, works at a McDonald's restaurant during the school year. When the law passed on July 1, he had to give up his job. His employer said he could be rehired as soon as he turned 14.

“When he contacted back in February, we told him we didn't need him. The workforce was complete.”

Isabelle Lambert, Jack's mother

Ms. In Lambert's view, employers increasingly turned to immigrants to fill available positions.

Analysis confirmed by Village Vacations Valcartier, Sandra Nadeau Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Communications.

“In recent years, we have been facing acute labor shortage. This is no longer the case. “The mass migration allowed us to hire adults with fewer limitations than youth,” noted Ms. Nadeau.

More competition

The number of applicants for a position has increased significantly. For the first time since the end of the pandemic, employers will be able to carry out rigorous selection before hiring young people.

However, a teenager aged 14-16 can still find gainful employment. As long as you make an effort.

“Young people need to stand out.”

Sandra Nadeau, Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Communications for Village Vacations Valcartier

To put all the odds on his side, Jack, with the help of his parents, “professionalized his CV” before dropping it off at various restaurants. “We identified his skills, his qualities, his jobs. We also attached letters of recommendation,” his mother said.

Despite everything, Jack faced several rejections before getting a trial day at Boston Pizza.

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“Last year, McDonald's hired him right away. There we prepared for his interview. His resourcefulness and reliability stood out,” Ms. Lambert said.

Despite getting a job at the school, the teenager is looking forward to overtime this summer.

“The number of customers in restaurants has fallen. They have to make choices,” Ms. Lambert said.

A few positions are still available

Some of the 200 positions to be filled at Village Vacances Valcartier are still available for this summer.

“We look after young people who want to work, even if they don't have experience,” Ms. Nadeau assured.

But be careful, the work is worth it.

To keep their job, young people must respect instructions and present themselves.

“We will try to honor their requests so that they can enjoy the summer as well. However, firing a person is no longer a problem, we can draw from a bank of candidates,” she warned.

As for Quebec City, recruitment for day camps is 95% complete at the time of writing.

What the law allows

  • As of June 1, 2023, the minimum age for employment in Quebec is 14 years.
  • Between the ages of 14 and 16, a young person can work a maximum of 17 hours per week during the school year, including a maximum of 10 hours from Monday to Friday.
  • This schedule does not apply to school holiday periods of more than 7 consecutive days.
  • He must be able to stay at home between 11pm and 6am including summer, weekends and holiday periods.
  • Nighttime restrictions do not apply to newspaper delivery workers, babysitters and those involved in artistic production. They also don't mind the young people who work at the holiday camp when they have to be there.
  • Before the age of 14, a young person can only hold certain types of jobs, such as newspaper delivery, a facilitator in a non-profit social or sports organization.
  • A young person under the age of 14 must have Permission from parents to work.
  • Young people aged 12 years and above can do light agricultural work. The company employing them should have less than 10 employees in total.
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Source: Government of Quebec

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