Yukon MP Larry Bagnell announces federal funding at the legislature building in Whitehorse on July 16, 2019. Bagnell spoke to the News on April 7 about student loan payment deferals, as well as the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)

Territorial and federal governments to help post-secondary students

Federal and territorial governments respond to Yukon Party concerns

The Yukon Party has questions for the federal and territorial governments regarding help for post-secondary students who lost their jobs and are planning to continue studies in the fall.

Copperbelt South MLA Scott Kent of the Yukon Party wrote a letter to both levels of government outlining his concerns on April 6. He spoke with the News on April 7 to go over his concerns.

Kent said some of his constituents contacted him about this issue because many post-secondary students have lost their part-time jobs and may not have summer job prospects due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

He added many Yukoners study Outside but return here for summer work.

This is a gap in the relief plans, Kent said, leading him to write the letter so his constituents can get a sense of what programs are being offered or may be coming up.

Kent clarified that once the pandemic is over, everything can return to normal as some of the lost jobs come back.

“I think it makes sense to have some of these measures be targeted and time-limited so that they can be revisited as the situation develops over time,” Kent said.

He said he does not want to see any post-secondary students not be able to pursue their studies in the fall due to a lack of resources.

Yukon MP Larry Bagnell, of the Liberal Party, also spoke with the News on April 7 regarding the letter.

He said he is glad the Yukon Party has publicly voiced support for helping post-secondary students and that students can currently get a loan deferment.

The deferment would last for six months, starting March 3, with students not required to make interest or principal payments during that period.

Students who lost a part-time job due to the pandemic are eligible for the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit, provided they made at least $5,000 in 2019.

He added the federal government would be giving out a 75-per-cent wage subsidy to businesses. Bagnell said this would help some post-secondary students.

“Some students will get jobs at those companies,” Bagnell said.

He said the subsidy could allow some business to open up again, and that students who lost their jobs at such businesses could return to work.

Students could be hired to other jobs and still be covered by the subsidy, provided the student is not an immediate family member of the business owner.

The relief benefit has already been introduced and went into effect on April 6. He estimated that there were nearly 1 million applicants for the benefit on day one.

The wage subsidy is about three weeks away, Bagnell estimated, attributing this lengthy time period due to the large scale of the program. He said this is a $71-billion subsidy.

Rules are still being ironed out for the subsidy.

Bagnell said all the information regarding COVID relief programs can be found at www.canada.ca.

He added that there is a line northerners can call if they are having trouble with applying for these programs. That number is 1-866-426-1527.

Tracy McPhee, the Yukon’s Minister of Education, gave a statement to the News by email on April 7.

She said her department is working with Yukon College on how to support students returning in the fall.

“We are continuing to support employment opportunities, where possible, for Yukon post-secondary students through the Student Training and Employment Program, which provides wage subsidies for employers who hire Yukon post-secondary students for summer jobs,” McPhee said in the email.

She added that the territory is working with the federal government on its programs to help post-secondary students and she looks forward to providing more info once it becomes available.

“The Government of Canada provides the funding and collection for student loans in Yukon and their recent adjustments to student loans will benefit Yukon students,” McPhee said. “While many post-secondary students are not eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, we understand that further supports are being developed that will help post-secondary students.”

Contact Gord Fortin at gord.fortin@yukon-news.com

Post-secondary EducationYukon College

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley gives a COVID-19 update during a press conference in Whitehorse on May 26. The Yukon government announced two new cases of COVID-19 in the territory with a press release on Oct. 19. (Alistair Maitland Photography)
Two new cases of COVID-19 announced in Yukon

Contact tracing is complete and YG says there is no increased risk to the public

Yukon Energy in Whitehorse on April 8. Yukon Energy faced a potential “critical” fuel shortage in January due to an avalanche blocking a shipping route from Skagway to the Yukon, according to an email obtained by the Yukon Party and questioned in the legislature on Oct. 14. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon Energy faced ‘critical’ fuel shortage last January due to avalanche

An email obtained by the Yukon Party showed energy officials were concerned

Jeanie McLean (formerly Dendys), the minister responsible for the Women’s Directorate speaks during legislative assembly in Whitehorse on Nov. 27, 2017. “Our government is proud to be supporting Yukon’s grassroots organizations and First Nation governments in this critical work,” said McLean of the $175,000 from the Yukon government awarded to four community-based projects aimed at preventing violence against Indigenous women. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon government gives $175k to projects aimed at preventing violence against Indigenous women

Four projects were supported via the Prevention of Violence against Aboriginal Women Fund

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: You don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone

When I was a kid, CP Air had a monopoly on flights… Continue reading

asdf
EDITORIAL: Don’t let the City of Whitehorse distract you

A little over two weeks after Whitehorse city council voted to give… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Northwestel has released the proposed prices for its unlimited plans. Unlimited internet in Whitehorse and Carcross could cost users between $160.95 and $249.95 per month depending on their choice of package. (Yukon News file)
Unlimited internet options outlined

Will require CRTC approval before Northwestel makes them available

Legislative assembly on the last day of the fall sitting in Whitehorse. Yukon’s territorial government will sit for 45 days this sitting instead of 30 days to make up for lost time caused by COVID-19 in the spring. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Legislative assembly sitting extended

Yukon’s territorial government will sit for 45 days this sitting. The extension… Continue reading

asdf
Today’s mailbox: Mad about MAD

Letters to the editor published Oct. 16, 2020

Alkan Air hangar in Whitehorse. Alkan Air has filed its response to a lawsuit over a 2019 plane crash that killed a Vancouver geologist on board, denying that there was any negligence on its part or the pilot’s. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Alkan Air responds to lawsuit over 2019 crash denying negligence, liability

Airline filed statement of defence Oct. 7 to lawsuit by spouse of geologist killed in crash

Whitehorse city council members voted Oct. 13 to decline an increase to their base salaries that was set to be made on Jan. 1. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Council declines increased wages for 2021

Members will not have wages adjusted for CPI

A vehicle is seen along Mount Sima Road in Whitehorse on May 12. At its Oct. 13 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the third reading for two separate bylaws that will allow the land sale and transfer agreements of city-owned land — a 127-square-metre piece next to 75 Ortona Ave. and 1.02 hectares of property behind three lots on Mount Sima Road. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Whitehorse properties could soon expand

Land sale agreements approved by council

Most Read