UCRU REACTS TO SPEECH FROM THE THRONE
Updated: Jan 12, 2021
25 September 2020 Ottawa- On September 23, 2020, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, delivered the Speech from the Throne to open the second session of the 43rd Parliament and outline the government’s agenda. Though the speech outlined the Government of Canada’s plan for post-COVID-19 recovery, there was no mention of students or post-secondary education. UCRU is disappointed in this lack of recognition, as the economic uncertainty brought on by COVID-19 holds significant potential to negatively impact our 250,000 members and the over 1 million university students across Canada.
UCRU understands the important steps the Government of Canada is taking to stimulate job creation, welcome newcomers to Canada, and protect the environment. Investments in both domestic and international students alike are needed to ensure these goals can be met. UCRU has been advocating for these and for other supports, creating a two-year interest-free period for all Canada Student Loans for all new graduates. UCRU also endorses the investment in the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy, as students and the youth are the workforce of tomorrow.
The UCRU Chair and Vice President of External Affairs of the University Students’ Council at Western University, Mackenzy Metcalfe, reacted to the lack of students mentioned in the Throne Speech: “Students are important in supporting Canada's post-COVID-19 recovery,” said Metcalfe. “Without adequate support from the government of Canada, students will continue to struggle to pay for school, put food on the table and to make ends meet.”
The Undergraduates of Canadian Research-Intensive Universities is a pragmatic, evidence-driven advocacy alliance of nine student associations dedicated to high-quality, affordable and accessible education, and represents over 250,000 undergraduate university students across Canada.