A student take on the 2024 Federal Budget

by | May 1, 2024 | News

The 2024 Federal Budget was delivered in the House of Commons on April 16, 2024. Canada’s Federal budget focuses on addressing pressing concerns like the housing crisis and inflation. The document is called Budget 2024: Fairness for every generation, but aside from catchy names, what do we get? Though the budget was not student focused, some proposals to help students were outlined in the budget. Here’s what to expect. 

Rent payments in credit history: This step wasn’t taken specifically for students, but will likely help us, as many students are renting. The government wants banks and other lenders to create tools to report rent payment history to credit bureaus. This step is particularly beneficial for young Canadians and newcomers in Canada, who have a hard time establishing their credit history. Timely rent payment will now have two advantages: better credit score and a higher probability that you’ll get your deposit back, unless of course you paint graffiti on the walls.

Updating the CSFA Program: The federal student loans and grants are provided based upon financial need determined through a formula. This formula hasn’t been updated since 1998. Budget 2024 proposes to update this formula to reflect the actual housing costs faced by students.

Loans and grants: The government announced they will extend the increase in full-time Canada Student Grants and interest-free Canada Student Loans for another year. The full-time Canada Student Grant is increasing from $3,000 to $4,200 per year, with increased grants available for the 2024-25 year. The government also increased grants for students with disabilities, part-time students and students with dependents. 

Back to school: At present, mature students planning to take classes at post secondary institutions face barriers in getting federal student aid if they have a low credit score. But now, mature students will no longer face a credit screening requirement if they are applying for federal financial assistance for the first time. 

Co-op opportunities: This one will matter for students getting co-ops or internships. Through the Student Work Placement Program, the federal government will be providing over $200 million to “create more work-integrated learning opportunities for post-secondary students. 

Jobs and skill training: Budget 2024 proposes to invest heavily in Canada Summer Jobs to provide well paying summer job opportunities. It also proposes to allocate $150.7 million for the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy Program to “provide job placements and employment supports to youth.” Recognizing young Canadians’ passion for environmental activism, the government wants to create a Youth Climate Corps program, where young people can find jobs focused on battling climate change.  

Focus on mental health: The government is focusing on mental health for young people as well. They plan to allocated $500 million over five years to start a Youth Mental Health Fund, which will “help community organizations provide more care for younger Canadians, and better equip these organizations to refer youth to other mental health services within their networks and partnerships.” 

Other measures: Some measures were taken for future students, like auto-enrollment into a RESP account. To promote future research, talent scholarships for graduate and doctoral students were increased. Some other measures were taken for indigenous and low-income communities to assist them in graduating from high school and creating a successful future. 

This was just a quick snapshot of the Budget. There were many other interesting proposals like something called ‘the right to disconnect’, which aims to amend the Canada Labour Code to prevent employers in federally regulated sectors from communicating for work related issues with employees after scheduled hours. Looks like no more pretending to be away from your phone dodging your boss’s calls, you now have a legal right to ignore your boss; but having to laugh at their lame jokes, nothing we could do about that.

What are your views about the Federal budget? Reach out to us and share your thoughts by emailing info@thenuggetonline.com.

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