Manitoba is introducing a wage subsidy program for high school and post-secondary students in the private and non-profit sectors, Premier Brian Pallister said Friday morning.
The program will make up to $120 million available to help employers hire up to five students between May 1 and Sept. 4, and allow them to access a $7 per hour wage subsidy, up to a maximum of $5,000 per student.
The program is for Manitoba students age 15 to 29. Pallister said enrolment for the program will start in the next two days.
For the first two weeks of the program, priority will be given to employers who do not qualify for the various federal government assistance programs.
Pallister said he has been hearing from employers who want to hire people this summer, and the new program is meant to help students connect with those positions.
“I believe that the job opportunities are out there,” he said.
“What businesses are telling us is they want to get ready to resume doing some kind of business.”
Pallister said international students will be eligible for the program.
Employers will have to give students work that is allowed under current public health orders and be able to adapt to recommendations provided by public health officials over the summer. They will be reimbursed at the end of the employment period if they show proof they paid students’ wages.
The initiative will help make sure students can find work during the summer, Pallister said.
He encouraged students to look for a job this summer, and said he hopes the new initiative will make it easier for them to find one.
“Our program is designed to help young people who want to work. It provides an incentive,” he said.
“At the end of the summer, you’ll be better off if you work.”