According to employers, young people can choose to work where they feel more comfortable.
Many employers turn to young teenagers to make up for the shortage of personnel. Some start working as young as 12. Although this is their first work experience, these young people provide valuable services to their employers.
Alexandre Maltais is 16 years old. He has been working at the Cantine des Navigateurs, in Sainte-Flavie, for three summers already.
Alexandre Maltais works at the Navigators Canteen in Sainte-Flavie.
When he arrived at 13, the teenager had no work experience. We trusted him and he quickly became indispensable. There is a good supervising staff, very warm, he observes. It'sa good job offer for the summer.
This canteen was not the first choice of Alexandre Maltese, however. I hadn't planned to work here, but when I arrived, I saw all the fresh produce, that it was not a canteen like the others, that there was seafood, that it was really good quality, then I fell in love, he says.
Alexandre is not the only young person to work in this canteen. Three of the eight employees are under the age of 16. The latest arrival is 12 years old.
The restaurant owners never hesitated to hire them. The needs were dire.
According to Mitchell Pelletier, co-owner of the Cantine des Navigateurs, young people can do anything.
Extraordinary! We [got] the loot, we are lucky on that, when we take young people, they are really valiant, estimates the co-owner of the canteen, Mitchell Pelletier. They can do anything.
“It's the new generation, it's the next generation. They are the ones who are going to get us out of misery, because they want to work. »
— Mitchell Pelletier, co-owner of La Cantine des Navigateurs
According to Mr. Pelletier, school is starting too early, a complaint that comes up every summer in the tourism and restaurant industry.
At the Tim Hortons restaurant on Arthur-Buies Boulevard in Rimouski, half of the staff are under 16 years old. Unheard of for the restaurant.
According to supervisor Johanie Côté, applications are almost non-existent. We received only one resume from people over the age of 16 in three years, she illustrates.
She too has nothing but good words for young people .
“Sometimes it takes a little longer to show them, but once they learn, it's wonderful. They really want to learn.
—Johanie Côté, supervisor at a Tim Hortons restaurant
She says she is flexible in assigning young people to tasks where they feel more comfortable. The most versatile have the latitude to experiment with various fields.
Since applications are rare, recruitment is done by word of mouth.
Lauralou Aucoin-Fortin is a good example. I have several friends who work here with me, who have offered to work here or whom I have offered to work with me, she says. I also have family who worked for 9 years here.
Employed thanks to friends, Lauralou Aucoin-Fortin also recruits among the young people she frequents, which allows her to work with her friends .
She plans to continue working part-time in the fall.
At the Rimouski-Neigette Chamber of Commerce, President Guillaume Sirois confirms that the use of teenagers, already frequent, will become commonplace.
He believes that young people can also benefit of this experience.
In summer, hiring very young staff becomes commonplace.
[The benefits are] both professional and personal, he argues, as much [to] develop [the side] autonomy with customers as teamwork or manual labor.
“It's really great experiences that will follow them all their lives, regardless of the career choices they want to make for the future. »
— Guillaume Sirois, President of the Rimouski-Neigette Chamber of Commerce
For him, it is clear that young people are part of the solution to overcome the shortage of personnel , provided they have the support they need.
While the experience proves rewarding for these young people, the conditions vary according to workplaces in Quebec. Faced with this new context and given the risk of dropping out of school, several experts are calling for changes to better regulate child labor.
According to the report by Gabriel Paré -Asatoory