Canadian flag waiving with Parliament buildings in background

Canada Summer Jobs Changes Impact Emmanuel

– February 16, 2018

Emmanuel has expressed concern around recent changes introduced to the application process for the Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program. Groups such as the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC) and the Canadian Council of Christian Charities (CCCC) have provided helpful insights and advice for charities dealing with the new requirements. Emmanuel has benefited from the program. We have been able to hire students to work at the college during the summer months. This year we applied for funding, but chose to not check off the attestation clause causing the controversy. Instead, we submitted our application on paper and included our concerns in a separate document. We also shared our concerns with our local Member of Parliament, the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development, and Labour, and the Prime Minister’s Office.

Emmanuel Welcomed Members of Parliament on campus

On February 9, 2018, Emmanuel hosted a Round Table Discussion led by Harold Albrecht, the Member of Parliament for the Kitchener-Conestoga riding, and Colin Carrie, the Member of Parliament for the Oshawa riding. They heard from local faith groups, not-for-profit organizations, businesses, and constituents regarding the changes made to the CSJ program. Participants had the opportunity to share their concerns and how they have corresponded with the government on these changes. One thing became evident during these discussions. There are a great number of local community programs in our region, open to all members of the community, who depend on the CSJ funding. Without the funding, these programs may be in jeopardy this summer.

I was pleased to have the opportunity to personally share our concerns with our local MP over the new requirements to affirm certain values. Values which we cannot sign in good conscience. We communicated our understanding that this requirement is an infringement on our rights to religious freedom guaranteed under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Application to the 2018 CSJ program is now closed. I don’t know if our application will be successful. What I do know is the freedom to hold a religious belief and life value can never be taken for granted. While we pray for those who lead us, they must also be reminded of the rights of all citizens who may not believe what they believe. These are guaranteed rights in Canada. Isn’t that one of the things that makes our country of Canada very special to all of us?

Dr. Stephen Roy
President & Dean

“A great number of local community programs in our region…may be in jeopardy…”Mr. WordPress

Harold Albrecht, MP (left), Dr. Stephen Roy (middle), and Colin Carrie, MP (right).

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