Wrong direction for First Nations and Métis jobs numbers
Aboriginal unemployment has increased, with off-reserve First Nations unemployment now at 21.3 per cent and Métis unemployment reaching 9.4 per cent, according to Statistics Canada’s newest jobs report.
"I'm deeply concerned about unemployment rates among First Nations and Métis people going up at a time when most Saskatchewan people are able to find work," said Cam Broten, NDP employment and advanced education critic. "The Sask. Party government deserves some of the blame for that, because they scrapped important job-training programs like the Aboriginal Employment Development Program."
Statistics Canada reported that the number of First Nations and Métis people who are employed in Saskatchewan dropped over the last year, and the overall First Nations and Métis labour force – which counts those employed as well as those actively looking for work – dropped as well.
"I can't help but wonder how much better things could be in Saskatchewan if the Sask. Party government had not cut crucial programs that helped connect First Nations and Métis people with decent jobs," Broten said. "As a province, we all benefit when poverty and inequality are reduced – unfortunately, the Sask. Party government is taking us in the wrong direction."
Several sectors lost jobs over the past year including: trade (-5,300 jobs); accommodation and food services (-1,500 jobs); agriculture (-1,300 jobs) and manufacturing (-1,100 jobs). The number of self-employed entrepreneurs dropped by 1,500.
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