A Closer Look

Employment Insurance (EI) in Canada – The current system is broken former chief actuary says

Only about 40 per cent of Canada’s 1.3 million unemployed people now receive benefits. And claim formamong those who do, the range of benefits given in the largest labour-market program in the country varies widely among regions.

The current system is broken, said Michel Bédard, who co-wrote a paper to be released Thursday with economics professor Pierre Fortin of the University of Quebec at Montreal, for the Institute for Research on Public Policy.

The employment insurance system is failing to meet the needs of working Canadians, Mr. Bédard says, and it needs an overhaul to ensure the program is managed at arm’s length from the government, and that workers are getting adequate benefits.

The review shows the program “favours people living in some areas over others, how few people qualify compared with in the past, and how the government continues to play games with the financing of the EI system” in wrapping the fund into the government’s balance, he said.

Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Unbalanced EI system is failing Canadians, former chief actuary says – The Globe and Mail.

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