UPDATE ON CANADA SUMMER JOB PROGRAM APPLICATION
Several people have asked questions regarding the status of First Baptist in relation to the Canada Summer Job Program. Initially, First Baptist applied and was approved for a grant. Along with many other churches, however, we were concerned about an attestation that participating organizations were being asked to sign. Consequently, we met with MP Arnold Vierson, an MP from the PC party in Alberta. We also invited several other churches and organizations in Moncton to join us for the meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss how the new attestation in the summer job grant application affects our organizations specifically and what are the major issues we have with the attestation. This meeting was in preparation for the federal vote that took place on March 19 to remove the attestation. The motion to remove the attestation was voted down with the majority of the government agreeing that a values test should be part of the application process. With the vote, it became clear that the government was not going to back down from requiring the attestation be signed. Simultaneously, we gained a clearer understanding of how the ambiguous language of the attestation was being interpreted. Consequently, the Council of First Baptist Church voted to turn down the grant. We are still going to have a student this summer but will be paying the salary through our regular budget. Council has decided not to accept any money at all from the government through the Canada Summer Job Program. If you have further questions on this, feel free to speak with a Council member or Pastor Richard.
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