12 MAY 2016
Fredericton – On Friday May 6, David Coon, Leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick and MLA for Fredericton South, wrote the Minister of Post - Education, Training and Labour, Francine Landry, to express his concerns about the redesign of the province’s student summer job program.
“When they registered in April, students did not realize they were competing for scarce vouchers to be eligible for provincially subsidized summer work,” said Coon. “Furthermore, the private sector is now eligible to hire provincially subsidized students, which has put non-profit community groups at a distinct disadvantage.”
The Student Employment Experience Development (SEED) program was designed with twin objectives: to provide students with meaningful summer employment and to support the summer programming and services of non-profit community organizations, including local museums. The Priority Employment Program (PEP) component of SEED which provided students to museums has been cancelled altogether.
“Subsidizing the private sector to hire summer students threatens the summer programs and services of some community groups since they cannot afford to top up the minimum wage provided by the Province”, said Coon. “Cancelling the museum program makes no sense whatsoever.”
The Green Party leader will be meeting with departmental representatives later this week to seek improvements in the program.
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