Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a doubling of the Canada Summer Jobs program, which promises to raise youth employment across the country.
“We know that summer jobs are critical for young people,” says Trudeau.
The federal government’s investment will create more than 34,000 summer jobs for students this year. The plan pledges an injection of $113 million over the next three years, taking the number of student jobs from 34,000 in 2015 to over 70,000 this year.
“Our responsibility to give young people the tools and capacity to succeed means investing in our future,” says Trudeau, “but it also means investing right now in leaders, not just of tomorrow, but leaders of today.”
Trudeau made the announcement on his 100th day as prime minister, during a visit to Dovercourt Boys and Girls club in Toronto on Friday.
The program helps fund not-for-profit organizations and small businesses with the hiring and training of full-time students. Students must be between 15 and 30 years of age and planning to return to school in the fall.
Trudeau emphasized the already massive and growing needs of youth, in terms of unemployment, developing work experience and the need to get quality summer jobs.
“From what I hear [finding a job] is really competitive and it’s really hard,” says young Dovercourt club member, Mark Nunez, “I want to get a job this summer. Especially after Trudeau’s announcement.”
Additionally, the deadline for employers applying to the program has been extended until March 11. “We want as many Canadians to benefit as possible, so employers, apply now,” says MaryAnn Mihychuck, federal employment minister.