Federal budget fails to address student debt or youth unemployment

OTTAWA, Feb. 12, 2014 /CNW/ - Despite better than expected revenue projections, the federal budget does little to make post-secondary education affordable during a time of record student debt. Nor does it make any real strides in addressing the growing national crisis of youth unemployment.

"This budget continues the federal government's pattern of downloading the cost of post-secondary education onto students and their families," said Jenelle Davies, Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students-BC. "Students from low- and middle-income families will continue to be squeezed out of our colleges and universities, ending up unemployed like so many of their generation."

The federal budget proposed no spending to alleviate the over $15 billion student debt carried by Canadian families, despite widespread public concern about steadily declining affordability of post-secondary education. With 384,000 young Canadians aged 20-29 unemployed in January 2014, high student debt levels exacerbate an already precarious situation for young Canadians.

As the federal government launches it's Budget 2014, the BC government is in preparation's for a Tuesday launch of BC Budget 2014. Students have been disappointed with consecutive past BC budgets.

"Student debt and youth unemployment are symptoms of policy failures at the provincial level that are compounded by lacking federal funding," said Davies. "This federal Budget 2014 makes it even harder for BC legislators to reverse skyrocketing student debt in BC."

The Canadian Federation of Students-British Columbia is composed of post-secondary students from 15 universities and colleges in every region in BC. The Federation and its predecessor organisations have represented students in Canada since 1927.

SOURCE Canadian Federation of Students - British Columbia

For further information:

Jenelle Davies, Chairperson   (604) 733-1880
Zachary Crispin, spokesperson  (604) 355-5014