Candidates running for office in Canada’s upcoming federal election have zeroed in on employment as their central hot-button issue. Although the country’s latest employment report showed that job growth was on the rise, this slight expansion was heavy on part-time work and occurred in spite of a slow-moving economy.
Race heats up over employment issues
Growing concern about job quality and security has prompted aspiring federal leaders to build campaigns around improving hiring conditions. CBC reported that Liberal candidate Justin Trudeau recently revealed his plan to reduce Canada’s high youth unemployment rate. The source explained that Trudeau’s plan would involve spending $300 million per year for the next three years. Ideally, this initiative would yield 40,000 positions annually for workers between the ages of 15 and 24. Trudeau has also expressed plans to greatly increase youth hiring within Parks Canada and expand hiring for the existing Canada Summer Jobs Program, which currently has a maximum of 35,000 jobs.
Candidate Tom Mulcair recently revealed his plans to bolster Canada’s automotive and manufacturing industries, noted CBC. According to the source, Mulcair plans to reallocate more federal funds to help strengthen the sectors, which are currently not privy to much government assistance. Mulcair’s plan would provide financial incentives to manufacturing organizations in exchange for hiring increases. It would also establish “ICanada,” a new agency that would be a liaison between industry leaders and the federal government. Mulcair also hopes to pump more funds into automotive research with the goal of improving this major Canadian industry.
Job seekers look for answers
The Globe and Mail reported that Canadian job seekers are eager to see what reforms future leaders plan to make, as the country’s current labor situation is crumbling under the weight of qualified professionals unable to find employment in their desired fields. According to the news source, workers with postsecondary degrees are finding it difficult to secure lucrative employment unless they studied science, technology, engineering or mathematics. Many of the country’s newly created private sector jobs that fall outside of these niche fields are in the restaurant and retail industries, explained the source.
“It’s very limited out there,” Michelle Bennette told the Globe and Mail. Bennette worked with Alzheimer’s patients for years, but an injury left her unable to continue with such a physically taxing career. She is now looking to transition to an office job, but despite being educated with excellent computer skills she is not having much like tracking down available standard administrative positions.