Government of Canada Releases Budget 2023
OTTAWA—Budget 2023 contains an investment of $814 million into the Canada Student Grant Program, allowing eligible students up to $4,200 in non-repayable student aid starting August 1. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, students received up to $3,000 in non-repayable student aid.
“Getting a post-secondary education has never been more challenging,” said Melissa Chirino, Chairperson of the BC Federation of Students (BCFS). “Investments in non-repayable student aid will always open more doors for students to access education, especially those from marginalized communities.”
Budget 2023 recognized that inflation had hit Canadians hard at the grocery store, the gas pumps, and while paying rent. Students also have the additional burden of paying for the cost of education. During the pandemic, the Federal government doubled the Canada Student Grant to up to $6,000 – this relief measure was set to expire in August. An increase in grants will provide relief to many students and has been long advocated for, even before the pandemic; students are happy not to see a complete rollback to the pre-COVID grant levels. Students will continue to work with the government to ensure that increasing the investment continues to be a priority.
Access to post-secondary education is crucial for building a strong economy. Eighty percent of job openings in British Columbia over the next decade will require post-secondary training. Governments need to invest in making education accessible and affordable for all. This will ensure that one’s socioeconomic background is not a barrier to training the doctors, nurses, education and skilled workers of the future.
“We need governments to invest in our collective future by opening doors to post-secondary education,” said Chirino. “We cannot stop with this investment today, and we look forward to working with the government to make our colleges, universities, and institutions accessible for all.”
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