Many young Canadians overqualified for jobs: Report

1-in-4 young workers report jobs are below their skill level, which is highest among OECD countries

Nearly one-quarter of young Canadians are working at low-paying jobs beneath their skill level, according to a new report.

A Canadian Policy Research Networks (CPRN) study found 23.7 per cent of Canadians under age 25 report feeling overqualified for their jobs, mostly pouring coffee and answering phones. This is the highest rate among the 16 countries that belong to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

"There appears to be a mismatch between what young Canadians are being trained for and the jobs that are offered," stated the report.

The report is based on a combination of research, interviews and employment data from Statistics Canada.

The report also found the number of low-wage workers has increased in recent years. In 2000, 17.5 per cent of working people aged 20 and over earned less than $10 an hour. In 2005, that proportion (when the wage was adjusted for inflation to $11.25) was 19.5 per cent.

Recommendations in the report include developing more co-op education programs and encouraging more students to consider trade schools.

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