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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

November 29, 2016

 

For Immediate Release

 

 

 

Government Slashes Youth Organization Funding After Stating Funding Was Secure

 

 

 

David Brazil and Steve Kent, the Education and Public Engagement Critics for the Official Opposition, questioned ‎the Ball government in the House of Assembly on Tuesday on their decision to cut funding to a number of youth organizations in the province by upwards of 50 per cent after pledging that the organizations' funding was secure.

 

Brazil said, "During the Budget Estimates committee hearings on the official public record in the spring, the Minister who had been responsible for public engagement committed that the government would not be cutting core funding for youth organizations. ‎Why did the Minister give false assurances to these vitally important community organizations?"

 

Kent said, "People were assured, not only by the government before the Estimates Committee, but also again in the House during Question Period, that core funding was intact when it was not. The Finance Minister also made commitments to nonprofit groups that their core funding was secure when it was not. Either the Ministers were unaware of plans for which they were responsible or they were not being honest. Which was it?"

 

“Youth organizations have relied for years on a level of funding that was core to their operations,‎ and they were led to believe seven months ago that this funding was secure. But they are getting letters now, months later, saying the funding they have relied on for years to deliver important services to our province's young people is being slashed by half or more," said Brazil.

 

Kent said there have been cuts to youth centres, cadet programs and Allied Youth.‎ "‎How many youth across the province will be affected by this reduction of funding? The impact on our community's children, youth and families will be significant. Groups that deliver invaluable services and programs - including training, mentorship and professional development - will be devastated. Where will young people in these communities turn for these vitally important supports?"

 

Brazil said, "Economists say youth organizations leverage 4 dollars for each public dollar invested, so taking this money away from youth will ‎have an even greater impact than the government recognizes."

 

“Have the Liberals consulted before making these cuts? This is yet another example of the Ball Liberals promising one thing and delivering another. How can the government now axe funding that they committed to during the Budget process just seven months ago? How do these cuts serve the people of Newfoundland and Labrador?‎”

 

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Media Contact: Heather MacLean, Director of Operations and Communications

 

Office of the Official Opposition, (709) 729 6105 heathermaclean@gov.nl.ca

 

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