WE. What in earth is going on?

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Lastpointe

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So, we heard about an effort to give unemployed students money. Then we heard it was outsourced to WE. Justin’s pet charity. Then we heard his office offed it to them directly. Then no that was a mistake. Then we heard that volunteers are not paid, by definition of the word. Then it sounds like these volunteers are paid but less than minimum wage. Then we hear teachers are offered more than twice the rate of students to facilitate it. Exposing them to liabilities if things go wrong

what on earth???
 

Mendalla

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Don't look at me. I have probably read less on it than you have. It is starting to look like something that might blow up in JT's face next election, but we shall have to see. I do believe I saw that this is not the first time WE has received sole-sourced government work, either. It's sad, because I have usually been a big fan of the Kielburgers, who started it.
 

Lastpointe

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Yes. It’s now reported that since Trudeau came into power their government grants went fro $1 million to $5 million and they have received five small uncontested contracts. The sort of thing to pass off to your friends.


the civil service is able to deliver billions of CERB payments but not deal with this? Makes no sense. And it makes no sense to pay people for volunteer work. Ie. volunteer means. Volunteer!
if they want to help students find work, give money to business to hire students. Give money to charities to hire students. Not sure what is so difficult
 

Mrs.Anteater

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I know WE only from a friend’s daughter who went with them to some South American country to do a bit of volunteer work as well as to Ottawa to some big meeting, which I believe was at least partially paid for. I would not consider this as replacement for income but rather part of education with a volunteer component. She did have to come up with some of the money for the travel as far as I know.
They do have big events which would cost a lot of money- mind you, right now, I would doubt any outside Canada travel or big events would be happening. She was a highschool student at that time.
 

KayTheCurler

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Until this came up I hadn't heard of WE. I haven't met or heard of anyone who has been involved in it. A teacher told me it sounded like money for jam to her and regretted she couldn't get on the band wagon.
 

ChemGal

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I don't understand the financial aid decision at all in terms of who gets counted for what. CERB, students, etc. Why does it matter if a student is 25 or 35 in terms of what money they have access to for 'volunteering'? Why does it matter if someone last year made 2000 or 6000?
 

Mrs.Anteater

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Personally, I think WE does a lot a great work with youth. And it's pretty transparent about its finances & impact, if you look at its website.
This article gives further explanation about this grant & some of the politics at play in response. Trudeau defends WE charity contract amid concerns of conflict, lack of accountability
I don’t find this clarifying at all. What is the intent- to keep Canadian students who usually study abroad busy in Canada while they cannot return to the foreign country? Or, to give them an income? Or to give them an internship in a charity organization- but what if they study something completely unrelated?
 

Carolla

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No, I don't think it is really about students who study abroad. Much student summer employment will not exist this year - so this is, I think anyway, striving to provide some income to those students who would ordinarily spend the summer working to raise funds for their next year of tuition. At least that is what I take primarily from the outline on the government website - Support for Students and Recent Graduates Impacted by COVID-19 - Canada.ca
 

Lastpointe

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The last few days have only made it more confusing. I have no issue with WE as an organization. The issue is this unusual arrangement. They are reporting that teachers are being recruited for $12,000 to mentor students doing volunteer work. And WE is “hiring” these student volunteers to do media on line. That is not quite like delivering food boxes

and they are getting paid $19,000,000 which makes no sense

either you are a volunteer helping out, or you are a minimum wage employee. But this is a $10/ hour sort of job. So is that taking a minimum wage job away from someone ?

the connection with the trudeaus makes it very questionable . .

both opposition parties are asking for investigations
 

Mrs.Anteater

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No, I don't think it is really about students who study abroad.
Oh, but that is what it says in the eligibility list:

  • Studying abroad but currently residing in Canada”
That’s whats confusing to me.
 

Lastpointe

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So now after all the controversy, including an odd report yesterday that board members had suddenly resigned, they are backing away from this contract

i doubt that will silence the criticism though. An explainaton is needed how Justins pet charity got a $900 million contract. And how they got four other untendered contracts

and how their grants went from $1,000,000 to $5,000,000 when Justin became pm

we can’t have powerful people doling out gifts to their friends
 

Mendalla

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It's not what you know, it's ... (you know the rest)

As always, my cynical first thought is that they are just the ones who got noticed. Both the Libs and the Cons have been guilty of this many times over with contracting. Rewarding your friends is apparently good business when you're in politics. My gut feeling is that even the NDP would be no different, just that it would be unionized and union-affiliated organizations reaping the benefits.
 

Lastpointe

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Yes I agree. There are always hand outs. $900,000 is a pretty big hand out. Today the globe has a report, before the contract was hurriedly withdrawn this morning, that had numerous other volunteer organizations discussion who else should or could have been involved. Groups with offices, contacts, people on the ground, experience at volunteering

WE as an organization seems to be more about engaging, raising awareness, getting kids enthusiastic. Not quite like the United way which is set up to help

and paying people to volunteer is bizarre. If you want to give kids more money than they ar currently getting, my friends son received $1000 from the government then figure out a way to encourage businesses to hire the,

where we live now, landscapers can’t hire youth full time. They are getting the $2000 and so are either not willing to work or will work parttime up to the $1000 allowed but no more. Would rather relax. So contractors cant get people. Golf club is the same
 

Luce NDs

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Pay no one for doing nothing ... although there are great incentives paid out to administrators in scattered positions for do'n questionable stuff!

Alas ... common humanity is not allowed to question ...

Consider it a quantum shot ... all in the dark given what intelligence we are allowed! It is discouraged by stoics of the most powerful kind ... in between a scale of infinite metric!
 

Lastpointe

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I am concerned

am I the only one who wonders at trudeaus motives here

if this was any other government I would expect to see up roar
but with our daufain Justin it appears that the “woke” part of Canada does no t care that he is as corrupt as anyone else.
help me understand

you don’t care About one billions dollars ? You don’t care he gave it to his friends to figure out? You don’t care about the blurring of lines between paid work and volunteerism? I don’t get it
 

Lastpointe

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And sadly this won’t get anymore replies. Because you don’t care about tax payers
 

BetteTheRed

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Who's not a taxpayer? I certainly am.

Point is, with the pandemic, people need to be economically "shored up". So, CRA has done most of this. This particular side angle, seems to be right up WE alley. Do you suggest we spend the summer on a RFQ?
 

Mendalla

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And sadly this won’t get anymore replies. Because you don’t care about tax payers
What's with the low blow? Everyone here cares about taxpayers because everyone here is one as far as I know. A couple of us pay taxes to countries other than Canada, but we all pay taxes.

And if you read my posts above, I basically agree with you, even if I don't see it as any more egregious than a lot of other government contracting scandals and probably is one of the less egregious ones in the greater scheme of things.

Who's not a taxpayer? I certainly am.

Point is, with the pandemic, people need to be economically "shored up". So, CRA has done most of this. This particular side angle, seems to be right up WE alley. Do you suggest we spend the summer on a RFQ?
Maybe not an RFQ but at least someone at arm's length from the PMO reviewing the contract before it is awarded. The PMO should never, ever have the final say on something like this. Especially given the Liberal Party's long history of rewarding friends.

I sincerely hope the ethics commissioner finds nothing wrong. It's not what I expect, though.

And if a pandemic is acceptable as an excuse for lowering our standards, then we can no longer criticize the US or other countries who do the same for the same reason.
 
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