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February 15, 2008
Toronto announces new approach to youth employment
Today, the City of Toronto officially launched the Partnership to Advance Youth Employment (PAYE), an employer-led initiative that provides young people with positive alternatives and opportunities. PAYE is built on a foundation of partnership between the City, employers and the community. PAYE is an integral part of the City’s Community Safety Plan - making our safe city safer.

PAYE is spearheaded by business leaders and includes a number of employers who have come forward with jobs for youth from Toronto’s 13 priority neighbourhoods. Through PAYE, employers have the opportunity to fill entry-level positions with pre-screened applicants that have the necessary training and skills. At the same time, the initiative supports the City’s aim of providing opportunity to its young people.

“Ensuring that every young person has opportunities and hope for a bright future is the key to building an inclusive city that is safe, prosperous and liveable,” said Mayor David Miller. “Thanks to PAYE and a number of corporate leaders, more young Torontonians will get those opportunities.”

A pilot was tested in Lawrence Heights in 2007, with support from 29 employers. Through the pilot, 100 youth received employment coaching and participated in employer-led workshops; 70 youth attended job interviews; 39 youth were offered employment and two were awarded educational bursaries. For 2008, PAYE will be expanding on the success of the pilot and will host three Community Recruitment Events. Two will be in the spring of 2008, one in Flemingdon Park-Victoria Village with Crescent Town, and another in Kingston-Galloway with Scarborough Village and Eglinton East-Kennedy Park. In the fall, they will be in Weston-Mount Dennis and Lawrence Heights.

“It was amazing to see how quickly the business community got on board with PAYE. They recognized that there was a gap in youth having access to top employers and they wanted to create a bridge between the two - to create an even playing field,” said Steve Diamond, Chair of PAYE. “But make no mistake about it, they were looking for quality employees and PAYE was able to help ensure that the youth they interviewed were going to be able to hit the ground running to support their companies.”

To find out more about PAYE, go to or call 416-397-JOBS (5627).

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years, Toronto has won more than 70 awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:

Steve Diamond, Chair of PAYE, 416-324-5407
Stuart Green, Mayor’s Office, 416-338-7119,
Heather MacVicar, General Manager, Social Services, 416-392-8952,



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