Statement by the honourable Jim Munson (Canadian Unity Council)

Immediate Release

OTTAWA – The Honourable Jim Munson, Senator (Ottawa – Rideau Canal) will speak in the Senate tomorrow, April 6, 2006, on the cutting of federal government funding to the Canadian Unity Council.

“The decision by the Harper government to cut funding to the non-partisan Canadian Unity Council will scrap valuable programs such as Encounters with Canada, a youth program geared towards teaching youth from diverse backgrounds about this country,” said Senator Munson.

“As a Senator I met the students of Encounters with Canada, as have many of my colleagues from both sides of the floor.  This program taught young Canadians about the diversity of this land,” continued Senator Munson.

“Where else could students from all across Canada exchange their vision for this country in such an open and inclusive way?  I am disappointed that our young citizens are being forgotten.  The Harper government’s agenda ignores this country’s future: our children.”

Encounters with Canada is a one-week program of Canadian studies held at The Terry Fox Canadian Youth Centre, in Ottawa. From mid September to early December and from late January to early May, more than 138 high school students per week, aged 14 – 17 come from across the country to our Nation’s Capital for a once in a lifetime opportunity.