From the House – John Rafferty MP


John Rafferty MPWith the May long weekend nearly upon us it is safe to say that summer is just around the corner. For some, that time will come sooner than for it does for others. I’m talking about our students who, after a long winter of studying and working towards their future careers, are looking to recharge their batteries, gain some valuable career experience, and earn some money to help pay for their increasingly expensive studies. The good news is that help is on the way for them.

As I am sure you know, the job market is very tight and there are precious few opportunities for our students to find decent work.  For those who chose to stay close to home to study at local institutions like Lakehead University or Confederation College there are very few options to work in the same field in which they are studying.   The poor job market in Northwestern Ontario also means that students who are pursuing their education elsewhere have a strong incentive to stay in those communities and away from home during summer months.   This situation is clearly not good for students, their families, and the economic development of the region, but thankfully the Canada Summer Jobs Program will again be investing locally to create new work opportunities for students from our region.

There’s no question that the key to the future economic development of our region is to retain our best and brightest youth and to give them the chance to study, work and reach for their dreams here at home. As such, I was happy to recently announce this year’s Canada Summer Jobs allotment of more than $279,000 for the riding of Thunder Bay – Rainy River.   For those who are unfamiliar with the program, Canada Summer Jobs is a long standing federal government program that funds the creation of summer jobs with community groups, small businesses, organizations and municipalities for full-time students between the ages of 15-30.

With this year’s funding for the riding of Thunder Bay – Rainy River, more than 100 jobs will be created in 60 different projects across our riding.  Many projects in large communities like Thunder Bay, Atikokan, Fort Frances, and Rainy River will receive funding, but several new jobs will also be created and in smaller communities like Emo, Stratton, Morson, Barwick, Upsala, Neebing, Oliver Paipoonge and Kakabeka Falls among others.  Students in these communities will have the chance to earn money and gain experience working in a number of sectors of the local economy including front line health care, tourism, recreation, and local government and the public service.

I am quite happy to see that so many communities, large and small, will receive funding and have the chance to give their youth the opportunity to stay or return home, gain professional experience, and earn money to help further their studies. I want to thank the staff of Service Canada for all their hard work and care in administering this program. Thanks to their work more than 100 students in Thunder Bay – Rainy River will have a chance to further their studies and real life work experience that they may not have otherwise had. I wish all students a great summer and next year I look forward to helping create more opportunities for more students across Northwestern Ontario

For more information on the Canada Summer Jobs please visit:

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