Regent Park Employment Initiative
One of the most exciting components of the Regent Park revitalization is the Regent Park Employment Initiative, which connects unemployed and underemployed people in the community to employment and training opportunities made possible by the area's rejuvenation. Daniels and TCH joined with Toronto Employment & Social Services (TESS) to connect a large pool of educated and highly skilled professionals to jobs resulting from the development. They set up Regent Park Employment Services in the heart of the community as a physical point of connection for employers, job-seekers and agencies/services.
Through this gateway, ongoing customized recruitment strategies and training programs are developed to meet employers' requirements and ensure that the best candidates are matched with available opportunities. Benefits to employers include the streamlining of recruitment and training plans, and a central access point where they can access pre-screened candidates for positions. Job-seekers benefit through access to employment opportunities close to home, the chance to strengthen their qualifications to accommodate what employers are looking for, advice on skills such as resume development and interviewing to provide a competitive edge in the job market, connections with unions and/or professional affiliations where appropriate, and even post-hire support to help with job retention.
As builder/developer for all five phases of the Regent Park revitalization, Daniels agreed to lead employment initiatives by providing job opportunities directly or through their consultants, trades and commercial/retail tenants as well. As a result, many residents have found work with manufacturers, skilled trades and consultant firms; several have been hired by RBC Royal Bank, which has been part of the partnership since 2008; and numerous locals are working in Paintbox Bistro at the base of Daniels' Paintbox Condominiums. This economic matchmaking has proven such a success, that we have taken it on the road to other communities. The first stop is Bloor Street, just west of Keele, where we are already under construction on HighPark Condominiums. Daniels has asked the extended consultant team to encourage participation and involvement by hiring via TESS for available positions.