Immigrant Youth and Employment: Lessons Learned from the Analysis of LSIC and 82 Lived Stories

  • Sean Lauer
  • Lori Wilkinson
  • Miu Chung Yan
  • Rick Sin
  • A. Ka Tat Tsang


Finding a job has become a critical challenge to many youth. Immigrant youth, who have been a key part of the global migrants, are particularly vulnerable when entering the job market of the host country due to various structural barriers. However, in both public policy discourse and research, their labour market experience tends to be overlooked. In this paper, we report the employment experience of recently arrived immigrant youth based on an analysis of the LSIC and findings of in-depth interviews of 82 immigrant youth in four cities in Canada. Our results reveal that recently arrived immigrant youth tend to work in lower-skilled employment, experience significant delays in finding employment, have difficulties with foreign credential recognition, and have fewer means to access to job markets.


Immigrant youth Employment Labour market Job search Social network 



This study was made possible by the joint research grant (Grant #: 808-2007-1001) of Social Science and Humanities Research Council and Metropolis Canada. The authors would also like to acknowledge the assistance of the following individuals: Ian Clara (Statistics Canada Manitoba Research Data Centre), Christine Hochbaum (University of British Columbia), Da Rae Lee (University of British Columbia), Fadi Ennab (University of Manitoba), Jasmine Thomas (University of Manitoba), Kirandeep Sibia (McMaster University) and the two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on this paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sean Lauer
    • 2
  • Lori Wilkinson
    • 3
  • Miu Chung Yan
    • 1
  • Rick Sin
    • 4
  • A. Ka Tat Tsang
    • 5
  1. 1.School of Social WorkUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Department of SociologyUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  3. 3.Department of SociologyUniversity of ManitobaWinnipegCanada
  4. 4.School of Social WorkMcMaster UniversityHamiltonCanada
  5. 5.Faculty of Social WorkUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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