REGINA – With Tourism Week being celebrated in Saskatchewan, New Democratic Party Leader Ryan Meili called on the Sask. Party government to adopt the “Save our Summer” plan proposed by the NDP to help the struggling tourism industry recover from the $1 billion loss in 2020. Jobs in the visitor economy have fallen by almost 30% with about 20,000 fewer people working in jobs that support the tourism industry since 2019.
“Saskatchewan has so much to celebrate, and so many places to visit. We’re all hopeful for a safe and active summer in Saskatchewan,” said Tourism Critic Matt Love. “This could be a make or break year for many businesses in the tourism industry and it’s time for the Sask. Party to step up with real action to create jobs and help the tourism industry find its feet.”
Meili noted that the Sask. Party’s 2021-22 provincial budget included no new supports for tourism operators who were largely unable to operate through the 2020 season and now need to invest to grow their businesses. Despite the ongoing need to support the industry, Saskatchewan’s Tourism Sector Support Programs are now shuttered and no longer taking applications.
The Saskatchewan NDP’s “Save our Summer” plan is designed to make it easier for Saskatchewan people to be tourists in their own province and help create much needed jobs, supporting our tourism sector. The plan includes:
- Removing the PST from restaurant meals
- Free entry to provincial parks
- Reintroducing Gradworks to create good summer jobs for young people
“Saskatchewan people are proud of our province, and want to show it to the world,” said NDP Leader Ryan Meili. “We need all hands on deck to get our economy back on track. It’s time for the Sask. Party government to take these practical steps that will help to save our summer.”