In today’s Question Period the Honourable Andrew Cash (MP for Davenport, ON) raised the issue of precarious employment and unpaid internships. Cash noted that there are many reputable internship programs in Canada wherein profitable companies have turned to the exploitation of young workers.
With recent graduates carrying an average student debt load of $28,000, Cash noted that an increasing number of these young people are required to work for free before finding paid work in their field. Cash called out the government for turning a blind eye to the misuse of unpaid internships by Canadian companies as youth unemployment worsens.
Finally, Cash stated that the issue of unpaid internships is but one reason that the MP will be tabling an Urban Worker Bill that will among other things, call on the government to crack down on the misuse of unpaid internships. He concluded by urging the government to finally take the issue of youth unemployment in Canada seriously and asked for its support for the Urban Worker Bill.
We here at the Canadian Intern Association would like to say a huge thank you, to the Honourable Andrew Cash for joining us in the fight against illegal unpaid internships. Further, we look forward to working towards next steps collectively following Claire Seaborn’s meeting with you last Friday.