OTTAWA – Green Party MPs are urging Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion Minister Carla Qualtrough and the federal government to immediately put more money into the Canada Summer Jobs Program (CSJ). An increase to current funding would benefit more employers, more students and young people, as well as helping to meet essential needs in local communities across Canada.
“The Canada Summer Jobs program is over-subscribed all across the country,” said Paul Manly (MP, Nanaimo-Ladysmith), the party’s caucus critic for labour and social development. “Here in Nanaimo-Ladysmith there were almost twice as many applications from employers as the funding covered.”
Mr. Manly points out that recent changes to the CSJ program qualify private businesses for 100 per cent wage subsidy, a benefit that previously only applied to non-profits. In addition, some job placements have been extended to February next year. The higher private sector grants and longer duration of some placements means that in a time of greater need there are actually fewer jobs than usual.
“There are non-profit organizations and businesses in my riding, and across Canada, who are dealing with an increased demand for their services because of the public health crisis,” said Mr. Manly. “They would benefit from having more students working with them this summer. With additional CSJ funding we can create more jobs for young people, especially those who urgently need a job and don’t qualify for emergency benefits.”
Jenica Atwin (MP, Fredericton) confirmed that the CSJ funding does not match the needs of her community.
“In my riding alone there are over 100 private and community organizations who will receive nothing this year, many of whom rely on this funding for their operations every summer,”
said Ms. Atwin. “Donations are down. Customers have dwindled. Private sector summer employment is scarce for students. The Canada Summer Jobs program is the perfect vehicle to step up and pump more funding for student jobs into communities across the nation.”
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