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CNN's Van Jones to keynote national Good Jobs Summit

Good Jobs Summit brings together students, university, unions and academics to hold national conversation about job creation solutions

TORONTO, June 26, 2014 /CNW/ - CNN commentator, social justice advocate and best-selling author Van Jones will deliver the keynote address for the multi-partner national Good Jobs Summit, taking place in Toronto in the fall.

Van Jones is co-host of CNN's Crossfire reboot, and president and co-founder of Rebuild the Dream, a platform for bottom-up, people-powered innovations to help fix the U.S. economy. A Yale-educated attorney, Van has written two New York Times best sellers: The Green Collar Economy, the definitive book on green jobs, and Rebuild the Dream, a roadmap for progressives in 2012 and beyond. In 2009, Van worked as the green jobs advisor to the Obama White House. Van is also the founder of Green For All, a national organization working to get green jobs to disadvantaged communities.

"We think that Van Jones will make an incredible contribution to the conversation that we need to have here in Canada about how we create quality employment opportunities, particularly for young workers and students," said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. "We know that the economy is churning out an increasing number of part-time, temporary and precarious jobs, which many cannot even afford to live on - we need to have a serious conversation about solutions."

The Summit is sponsored by Canada's newest labour union Unifor, the Canadian Federation of Students, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and the CAW-Ryerson Social Justice Chair, with the goal of sparking a national conversation about the quality of work in Canada and creating good jobs - particularly for students and young workers. Ryerson's Centre for Labour Management Relations will host the event. Invitations are going out to other organizations and industry groups to participate - with the objective of hosting a dialogue between government, industry, students, academics, post-secondary institutions, NGOs and unions.

"Creating good jobs is a non-partisan issue and one that all Canadians should care about. To design a good job takes no more effort than it does to design a bad job and because of that, there really are no more excuses for why bad jobs should continue to exist," said Dr. Maurice Mazerolle, Director of the Centre for Labour Management Relations. 

The Good Jobs Summit, which is expected to draw at least 1,000 people, will take place at Mattamy Athletic Centre at the Gardens (formerly Maple Leaf Gardens), October 3-5. Regional activities and events will also be organized across Canada - locations and format to be determined.

Event program information will be released over the next month.

The new Good Jobs Summit website features a discussion paper, examining the employment landscape and a promotional video, created by and featuring young workers from Toronto and Montreal.