Hon. John Wise (Elgin) moved:
That this House condemns the continuing failure of the Government's policies to restore even pre-recession levels of employment opportunities for young people at a time when hundreds of thousands of young Canadians are about to join the labour force from our schools and universities and Canada's unemployment rate for young adults remains the highest of any western industrial nation.
He said: Mr. Speaker, I welcome this opportunity to lead off debate on an extremely important matter facing all governments, whether they be municipal, provincial or the federal Liberal Government we have in office at the present time. I am sure everyone would agree that one of the most critical challenges facing Canadian society, our business and industrial labour leaders, politicians at all levels, is that of youth unemployment. I am sure everyone would agree as well that how this challenge is met will shape the character of Canadian society for decades to come. Because of this challenge, and because of the deep concern we have for the fact that the present Liberal Government has not been able to deal adequately with the problem of youth unemployment, my colleagues and I have utilized one of those rare occasions we have today to put this motion before the House.
I think it would be interesting to examine and compare the record of this Government and that of the last Conservative Government in 1979-80. During that nine-month period in which we were in office we created jobs at the rate of 7,000 per month, for a total of some 60,000 jobs. In the 49 months since the election of this particular government, we find that it did not create jobs, that in fact the number of young people employed decreased by nearly 300,000. During the nine months we were in office we created jobs at the rate of some 7,000 a month, and during the period of time this Government has been in office it has decreased the number of jobs by 7,000 per month.
Official statistics indicate that at the present time we have some 525,000 to 550,000 young Canadians out of work. Indeed, if we examine some of the statements by the Minister of State for Youth (Mrs. Hervieux-Payette), who unfortunately is not in the House, and neither is the present Minister of
Employment and Immigration (Mr. Roberts)-I hope their schedules will permit them to join us before the-
Subtopic: BUSINESS OF SUPPLY
Sub-subtopic: ALLOTTED DAY, S.O. 62-NON-CONFIDENCE MOTION-YOUTH EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES