Helping Ontario’s Youth Thrive
Ontario’s youth are more diverse, educated and socially engaged than ever before, and in many ways are well positioned to succeed in today’s complex society. Unfortunately, not all young people are able to realize their potential. Some are unemployed or have precarious jobs. Some have mental health and addictions issues. Some experience racism and discrimination. Some are homeless. About 1 in 10 are not employed, in training or enrolled in education. This statistic is much higher for youth who are marginalized, such as those who are low-income, racialized, or Indigenous. Such inequities can start before birth and build over the life-course, resulting in negative health outcomes and the inability to thrive.
We know a lot of work is being done within the many sectors that support children and youth, but now is the time to move upstream and tackle the systemic root issues. Evidence shows that the earlier we invest, the better children do throughout their lives, and the greater their gains are in health and equity.