- 00:00 Opening Prayer
- 01:15 Introductions
- 03:00 Community, Family and Role models in Youth Formation
- 12:35 Forming Identity in Healthy & Unhealthy Ways
- 20:30 Role as Advocate for Community Opportunities
- 26:30 The Value of Participation and Hearing all Voices?
- 31:40 How do Governments support and hinder Community Formation & Well-Being?
- 37:20 How do governments help and reach those on the margins?
- 43:15 The Importance of Civil Society and ‘Networks of Relationships’
- 49:55 How do we enable Subsidiarity to flourish, practically speaking?
- 59:35 the Era of ‘Big Everything’ and the ‘Hollowing out of Civil society’ – why does civil society matter?
- 1:09:15 How do we resist Ideological formation?
- 1:10:45 Having friends and sources of information that you disagree with
- 1:13:45 Jamil’s upcoming work
- 1:15:35 Closing remarks & prayer
As Ontario’s first Advocate for Community Opportunities, Jamil Jivani plays a unique role, acting as an interlocutor connecting the needs of local communities through the vast bureaucratic apparatus and to the decision-making power of the provincial government. His work focuses on those traditionally underserved by government and lacking in gainful economic opportunities. Jamil brings to this work a communitarian philosophy and commitment to the principles of subsidiarity and solidarity that are deeply reflective of Catholic social ideas, particularly through the importance of the civic and communal sphere of society as a mediating space between the individual and government.
In a sense, Jamil’s work can be described as subsidiarity-in-action. The purpose of this webinar is to explore how Jamil brings these principles to life in his work; how his personal history informed this philosophy and approach to public policy; and how government can uplift communities without undermining them, or accidentally destroying their critical foundational components. His work often transcends the left-right political binary and involves public policy undergoing a genuine encounter with those on the margins of society, helping them become active participants in government and culture—an idea advocated for by Pope Francis. During this conversation with Jamil on April 18th, we discussed what is possible when these philosophical approaches are practically applied.
AVAILABLE HERE on our Youtube channel
Jamil grew up in a mostly immigrant community in Toronto, where he was nearly lost to feelings of hopelessness, anger, and hate. At 16 years old, he was labelled illiterate by the public-school system. But Jamil turned his life around with the support of role models and mentors. He went on to graduate from Yale Law School, teach at Osgoode Hall Law School, and dedicate his career to supporting youth facing challenges like he did growing up. Jamil’s work has taken him all over the world, from Belgium and Egypt, where he studied ways to help young men escape the influence of terrorist groups, to Ohio, where he partnered with JD Vance, author of Hillbilly Elegy, to help tackle America’s opioid crisis. Jamil’s leadership has been recognized with awards from many organizations, including the International Development and Relief Foundation, Yale University, and York University. Most recently, at 31 years old, Jamil survived a fight with stage IV cancer, which gave him even greater insights into how people can overcome adversity. His first book, Why Young Men: The Dangerous Allure of Violent Movements and What We Can Do About It, was published in 2019. Jivani currently serves as the Managing Director of Road Home Research & Analysis, a research non-profit supported by the Pinball Clemons Foundation. He previously served as a visiting professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, where he focused on issues affecting youth, immigrants, and low-income families.
In December 2019, the government of Ontario appointed Jamil as the province’s first ever Advocate for Community Opportunities and Special Advisor to the Premier. In his role, Mr. Jivani is working to open lines of communications between communities and the government to empower community members and enable them to increase their participation in government decision making. Included in Mr. Jivani’s mandate is increasing community safety by combating issues such as guns and gangs, human trafficking and racism, and making real and tangible progress to improve outcomes in areas such as: education, community services, income support, and access to housing. This work is helping to inform the programs and services and identify actions the government can take to improve people’s lives.