Many students have concerns about planning their careers; for some Black students, there may be additional aspects to consider. Canada exists as what Ryerson professor and CCPA research associate Grace-Edward Galabuzi calls an “economic apartheid.” The concept is used to describe the way the Canadian labour market and economy are structured as racially stratified systems in which Black people are confined to the lowest rungs of financial well-being.
It is important to acknowledge such challenges given the labour market and employment outcomes for Black people. According to Statistics Canada, the Black population experienced consistently higher rates of unemployment than the rest of the population even within post-secondary education: Black workers' unemployment rates were greater (at a rate of 9.2%) than non-Black workers (5.3%). That gap has grown significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic. In July, the unemployment rate for Black Canadians was 16.8%, while the national average was 11.2%.
Many companies and organizations are dedicating themselves to being diverse and inclusive employers, and to providing resources to support Black people who face barriers to employment. The following resources can guide career development professionals in supporting Black students and jobseekers in finding meaningful employment and advancing their career.
If you would like to discuss issues related to your career decision-making, our Career Counsellors can help; please make an individual appointment by calling 905-828-5451 or come see us at DV 3094.
We can help you to understand what is important to you in making your career decision and how to translate that into career options and potential employers.
Job Boards and Training Opportunities
This award-winning online magazine, funded by the Government of Canada, offers a list of job postings and a free business directory for Black Canadian-owned businesses.
Canada’s Best Diversity Employers
Canada’s Best Diversity Employers is a competition among Canadian employers that have exceptional workplace diversity and inclusiveness programs, including programs for members of visible minorities. They offer an online tool for finding jobs (at the bottom of the webpage) at some of these companies.
This online job board features well-paying job opportunities with companies that support diversity and inclusion.
A leadership development program building the next generation of Muslim and Black public servants. Our fellowship program consists of a training course developing civic engagement skills and a paid part-time placement in a Toronto city councillor’s office.
The site features the latest well-paying job opportunities for Black job seekers from companies who are sincerely dedicated to diversity hiring. Ultimately, the goal is to help reduce the high rate of unemployment in Black communities. Each post on the site includes a brief description of the positions available and a link where applicants can apply. This website is 100% free to use. NOTE: While the site is primarily in the US, it does feature jobs in Canada. Fill in the job title and location and press enter.
CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals
This Toronto-based charity offers training programs and an online job board as part of its mission to address economic and social barriers that affect Black youth (ages 14+) who are not in employment, education or training (NEET). The organization works with Black youth, their families, employers and the community in the following areas: career training, sector growth and social enterprise.
James Clark School of Engineering – Diversity & Inclusion Resources for Career Development
James Clark School of Engineering provides a list of external job boards that features companies that support diversity and inclusion, including the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, people of colour) community.
The Centre For Young Black Professionals
A Toronto-based charity that is dedicated to addressing the economic and social barriers that affect Black youth ages 14 and over who are not in employment, education, or training (NEET). Opportunities for volunteering.
Supportive Organizations and Services
Caribbean African Canadian Social Services
Part of CAFCAN, a registered charitable organization dedicated to strengthening the service framework for African Canadian children, youth and families, Caribbean African Canadian Social Services seeks to help clients succeed in their job search.
NexGen Builders Mentoring Program (Toronto Community Benefits Network)
This mentoring program supports Black, Indigenous and newcomer communities (with priority for women and youth) who are preparing for work or have been recently employed as apprentices or professionals in the construction industry. NexGen Builders also has an online job board.
Black North Initiative’s mission is to end anti-Black systemic racism throughout all aspects of our lives by utilizing a business-first mindset.
The JCA Annual Scholarship Awards Program
The Jamaican Canadian Association offers a scholarship program designed to recognize excellence and support access to post-secondary education for students of Caribbean and African heritage who are pursuing studies at an Ontario university or college. Each available scholarship offers at least $500. The next program opens in spring 2021.
This is a community-led registered charity working to improve the health and well-being of Black communities in Canada. Building on our track record as effective mobilizer and champions, we continue to grow our movement for change. Driven by groundbreaking research, strong partnerships, and people, this movement continues to build innovative solutions to improve Black health and well-being and mobilize people and financial resources to create lasting change in the lives of Black children, families and communities
Our vision is to create a space where the voices and experiences of Black Queer and Trans youth are heard and they feel comfortable and safe.
A grassroots gathering of queer and trans, Black, Indigenous and people of colour communities from across Peel
The mission of the Black Legal Action Centre (BLAC) is to educate, advocate, and litigate to combat individual and systemic anti-Black racism in Ontario. BLAC is a non-profit community legal clinic that provides free legal services for low or, no-income Black residents of Ontario. They provide legal advice related to employment, work, education, and human rights in general.
Black Therapist List is designed to eliminate some of the barriers and challenges to Blacks seeking support by making it easier for people who are looking specifically for a black therapist in their area.
Professional Associations and Organizations
Black Business and Professional Association
The BBPA is a charitable organization that aims to advance Canada’s Black communities by offering programs that support business and professional excellence, higher education and economic development. This includes courses and videos, as well as resources for young professionals, youth entrepreneurial development and entrepreneurship.
This site has lots of resources with links – primarily in Canada. However, there are some links to the US.
Black Physicians Association of Ontario (BPAO)
We envision a province where Black Ontarians are equitably represented in the field of medicine and racialized health disparities are eliminated.
(NSBPA) National Society of Black Physicians Assistants
Their goal is the creation of a community of PAs and pre-PAs, which will encourage knowledge-sharing, mentorship, and support. We believe an adequately diverse and humanity-driven field supports our mental health and wellbeing, as well as our patients. This is a US-based organization.
BMI strengthens leadership opportunities for ALL people by connecting Black youths, professionals and entrepreneurs at different stages of personal and professional growth with experienced mentors through a unique mentoring program.
Nia Centre for the Arts is a Toronto-based charitable organization that supports, showcases, and promotes an appreciation of arts from across the Afro-Diaspora. Nia Centre offers a Youth Mentorship & Engagement program which provides youth and emerging artists the opportunity to explore a wide range of creative pathways, expand their artistic abilities and build supportive connections with their peers and career artists.
Manyatta's mission is to create professional networking opportunities for the African Diaspora. Manyatta champions positive change by showcasing social entrepreneurs and organizations which are making a positive impact in our community. Manyatta brings professionals together who are all experienced in their own right in a space.
Canadian Black Scientists Network
The Canadian Black Scientists Network exists to Elevate, make Visible, Celebrate and Connect Black Canadians in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics & Medicine (STEMM) across sectors.
Black Artists’ Network Dialogue
Black Artists’ Network Dialogue seeks to empower and provide a spotlight on the contributions of Black artists in Canada and internationally.
Through an anti-racist, intersectional feminist, trauma-informed and survivor-centred framework, Black Women in Motion works to empower and support Black women and survivors of sexual violence.
The Canadian Association of Black Journalists
The CABJ is dedicated to diversifying the media through developing and mentoring professionals and up-and-coming media and communications students, while also increasing the number of talented individuals in front-line decision-making roles and management level positions.
Onyx Initiative aspires to be a catalyst for the professional growth and development of Black Canadians as they launch their careers after university/college, helping them through access to placements, mentorship and professional development
Canadian Association of Black Lawyers
Promoting Black Legal Excellence
Black Law Students Association of Canada
A national student-run non-profit organization founded in 1991. We are committed to supporting and enhancing academic and professional opportunities for black law students in both official languages. This commitment extends to black high school and undergraduate students and the community generally through our mentorship initiatives and our charitable initiative, BLSACares.
Black Female Lawyers Network (BFLN)
A not-for-profit organization that was established in 2006. The BFLN provides students and practitioners in the field a forum to convene, share and learn from each other.
Black Female Accountants Network
Their focus is on creating opportunities for our members to share knowledge and experiences through a process of engagement and professional reflection. To provide a forum to showcase and celebrate professional accomplishments and to utilize tools and resources for professional advancement.
Canadian Association of Urban Financial Professionals (CAUFP)
Committed to making the Canadian corporate landscape more equitable, diverse, and inclusive.
Association of Black Social Workers
The key mission of the association is to act as a support group and professional development resource for African Canadian workers.
Black Canadian Studies Association
The association will “encourage and to support research, publication, teaching, and understanding of diverse Black communities in Canada and the Diaspora.” In addition, the BSCA aims to create a common forum for scholars and activists from the various Black communities to study, research and share ideas to advance the interest and understanding of Black Canada and the Diaspora.
A not-for-profit organization geared towards empowering, preserving and promoting women issues & the heritage of African culture through African arts and Female artists or artists with African expressions.
Black Professions in Tech Network
BPTN is helping you meet top mentors in the Canadian tech and business space