Mr. Scott Fennell (Ontario):
Mr. Speaker, on Monday I spoke to a class of bright, young students at Henry Street High School in Whitby. 1 was impressed with their intelligence, and disturbed by their anger, for these students, Mr. Speaker, were very angry. Imagine facing a future where there are no jobs, a future where the old rules do not apply.
I want to get some answers to the students' questions. What is the Goverment going to do about youth unemployment? We all know that it will be over 50 per cent this summer. Yet, when the Opposition asks serious questions of the Minister of Employment and Immigration (Mr. Axworthy), he will only recite a list of short-term programs instead of long-term solutions. Mr. Speaker, the statistics for youth unemployment prove that these programs are not effective, and the human factor is even more telling.
This is a letter I received from one of my constituents:
I am writing to you and I need assistance. I have a problem. I cannot get a job.
I have been unemployed for over a year. 1 have a bookkeeping certificate and am now taking an accounting course through the Ministry of Education. I am also on the NEED program through Manpower. Nothing. Please is there anything you can do?
The letter was signed "Desperate".
It is time to bring together a task force, with representation from labour, industry, small business and the Provinces, to examine the transition from the post-industrial to the technological era.
The next time I speak to a class of students who are about to start their working lives, I hope the Government will have some answers for them.
Subtopic: LABOUR CONDITIONS
Sub-subtopic: YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT