In­ter­na­tional stu­dents could shun Man­i­toba

Winnipeg Free Press - - YOUR SAY -

Re: In­ter­na­tional stu­dents could lose pro­vin­cial health-care cov­er­age (March 14)

There has been a se­ries of set­backs con­cern­ing the health-care sys­tem in Man­i­toba. Just as the emer­gency room shut­down projects are be­ing car­ried out, the prov­ince is out to also cut the free health care that in­ter­na­tional stu­dents have en­joyed over the years.

This re­duc­tion is said to save the gov­ern­ment about $3.1 mil­lion per year, but they also for­get the fact that ba­sic so­cial ameni­ties are the rea­son Man­i­toba is the first choice for any fu­ture in­ter­na­tional stu­dent.

In­ter­na­tional stu­dents over the years have con­trib­uted a lot to the econ­omy, not only through tu­ition; the diver­sity in the prov­ince makes the at­mos­phere friendly and at­tracts tourists from all over the world.

With the re­cent rise of tu­ition and cut of health­care cov­er­age, it is send­ing the wrong sig­nal to the peo­ple in­volved — mak­ing them feel they are only wel­comed here based on their fi­nan­cial strengths.

There have been so many changes in post­sec­ondary ed­u­ca­tion since this new gov­ern­ment came to power and it is mak­ing Man­i­toba rank low in the eyes of in­ter­na­tional stu­dents.

While in­ter­na­tional stu­dents could re­ceive cov­er­age through a pri­vate plan, they would be re­quired to pay their own pre­mi­ums, at the cost of ap­prox­i­mately $400 per stu­dent.

The prov­ince’s uni­ver­si­ties and col­leges will be af­fected by this change, as there are other uni­ver­si­ties and provinces of­fer­ing bet­ter op­tions to in­ter­na­tional stu­dents.

It is ob­vi­ous the Man­i­toba Pro­gres­sive Con­ser­va­tive gov­ern­ment is not look­ing crit­i­cally at the con­se­quences of this ac­tion, since in­stead of sav­ing money, the num­ber of stu­dents com­ing to the city will de­crease.

We would like the gov­ern­ment of Man­i­toba to con­sider the in­ter­na­tional stu­dents and bring a bet­ter idea that will suit us all.

HABEEB ADEOTI with Ezeh-ig­bokwe Kosi Ify, Tami­tope Femi-So­dunola, Ade­mola Praise Omoyeni, and Deb­o­rah Oshon­eye


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