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COVID in Canada – Employment Insurance backlog should be eliminated in the coming week

The federal government has processed one million claims for employment insurance, just under half of the claims received so far as unemployed Canadians flood the system with applications.

Federal officials said that, by Friday, the government had received 2.4 million applications, almost matching the 2.8 million claims received in all of 2019. And it says the backlog should be eliminated in the coming week.

“Our ability to process this surge in volume has been tested and challenged more than ever before,” senior bureaucrats wrote in a note distributed to civil servants on Friday.

Last week alone, the government processed 714, 676 EI claims, compared to 47,459 claims in the same period last year, the note said.

The government has closed Service Canada centres where Canadians could visit in person because of employee concerns about catching the virus. But the government says Canadians can apply online or by phone.

“In response to COVID-19, Service Canada has had to reinvent itself to ensure Canadians can access the services previously available in person,” it said.

Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story @  Ottawa hit with 2.4 million claims for employment insurance | The Star

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