Canada Summer Jobs Ideological Shift
The changes in eligibility for CSJ grants could impact a wide range of Christian ministries, organizations and programs. Of even greater concern, we believe this is a violation of the guaranteed freedoms of religion, thought, belief, opinion and association offered by Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Section 2).
The EFC is developing resources to help equip Evangelicals to respond to the ideological shifts in the Canadian Summer Job program. Here are the latest EFC resources:
- Informative interactive webinar scheduled for Jan. 25, 2018 at noon Eastern. Sign up and join in!
- Two-minute video
- Answers to frequently asked questions
- Sample letters to contact your MP
We do encourage our churches and ministry organizations to continue to file for the grant this year if you have done so previously, despite the attestation requirement that has been included. Please follow the two important steps below when you apply:
- File your application using a PAPER COPY and hand-deliver to the appropriate Service Canada office or mail by registered mail. Note: The deadline is February 2, 2018.
- Copy your complete application and provide it to your local Member of Parliament.
- We recommend you check “NO” in the attestation box on your hard copy application and include the wording provided below in place of the attestation written in the CSJ.
- The CCCC has advised that you could check “YES” to the attestation, then strike out the attestation on the CSJ application and insert the wording provided below.
- DO NOT FILE ONLINE – if you do not check the attestation box, your application will be considered incomplete and automatically declined.
Wording to include:
On the basis of religious conscience, we are not prepared to express the words that the Minister has required in the Applicant’s Guide. We attest that we are committed to upholding our obligations under all Canadian law, including human rights law. We believe the Minister does not have the jurisdiction under law to compel someone to make a statement or adopt a belief, especially one that conflicts with our religious conscience under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as a condition for receipt of funding, nor does the Minister have the right to compel speech as a condition of receiving a financial benefit from the government of Canada. We respectfully decline to make a statement that is inconsistent with our fundamental constitutionally protected personal beliefs, including those about the value of life and the right to life under section 7 of the Charter, and about the freedom of religion as guaranteed in s. 2(a). Please accept our application with the above-noted statement in substitution for the statement set forth in the online application process and in the Applicant’s Guide.
- The EFC has created an Interfaith Statement on the Changes to the Canada Summer Jobs Grant Program. We would encourage you to contact them and sign on to this statement. Contact: Julia Beazley at beazleyj@theEFC.ca.
- If your application gets declined, please inform PAOC’s Head Office by emailing your church name and city, and the number of students you applied for. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org and use the Subject line: “CSJ refusals” in your email.
- Also advise your MP of the decline.
Do note that the application deadline is Friday, February 2, 2018.
Calling or emailing your local Member of Parliament on this issue is valuable.