About the Program

About the Job

Duties and Benefits

As a page, you can:

There are many benefits to working as a page:

  • Flexible work hours that accommodate your class schedule
  • An attractive salary
  • Your travel costs paid at the start and end of your contract
  • Special access to key events
  • New friendships
  • A job in an iconic setting

Training

In late August, new Pages begin their stay in Ottawa with an intensive training program. During this training, they learn about their new work environment, their responsibilities and duties, and what they need to know in order to provide the high level of service required in the House of Commons.

Salary

Pages work at the House of Commons for a one-year term beginning in late August, and are required to work a minimum of 15 hours a week. Their university course schedules are arranged in consultation with the Page Program to ensure that there are no conflicts with their work schedules at the House.

Under the terms of their contract, Pages are paid $16,587 in 26 equal payments over a 12-month period. In addition, a sum of $1,200 is paid at the end of the employment period for successful completion of the contract.

Accommodation

Pages are responsible for finding their own accommodation. They must pay for their rent and all other expenses while in Ottawa, including tuition fees, books and food, etc. Pages from outside the National Capital Region often stay in one of the university residences.

Testimonials

History

Pages first began working in the House in the early years of Confederation, but their role has evolved significantly since then.

The Page Program as we know it today was introduced in 1978 by the Honourable James A. Jerome who was then the Speaker of the House. A few years earlier, in 1974, the Speaker had asked the Clerk of the House to prepare a report as part of a review of the existing program at the time.

The report, prepared by the Standing Committee on Management and Members’ Services, concluded that the Canadian Page Program was unsatisfactory for a number of reasons and that, in order to meet the demands of a modern society, it should achieve the following objectives:

  • symbolize the national character of Parliament;
  • increase the public’s knowledge of parliamentary proceedings;
  • provide high-quality service to Members; and
  • offer employment opportunities for young people, with no discrimination on the basis of sex.

The Program was then open to graduating high school and CEGEP students in Canada who were beginning their studies at one of the universities in the National Capital Region. In doing so, the goal was to recruit students from across Canada, pay them a salary, and achieve the objectives set out in the report.

When the new Program was implemented, Speaker Jerome stated that, “in future years the entire country will benefit from having these citizens back in the country, better equipped through education and through their exposure here to a practical knowledge of the Canadian House of Commons.” (Debates, October 10, 1978, p. 6953)

To learn more about the history of the Page Program, you may read the article entitled “The Commons Then and Now: Pages,” written by Marc Bosc, a former Page and former Acting Clerk of the House of Commons, for the Canadian Parliamentary Review (Vol. 12, No. 2, Summer 1989).