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Cities get the cold shoulder with EI announcement

The government's October 12 announcement that they will extend two EI pilot projects for eight more months ("Best 14 Weeks" and "40 per cent Allowable Earnings") is welcome news for the many workers who find themselves in precarious employment. The government should move quickly to make them permanent features of the EI Act.

But at the same time, too many workers are being left out in the cold.

People who live in Canada's most populous urban centres are being shut out from the five-week EI extension also announced by the federal government on October 12. For those who are laid off, the cancellation of the five week extension could add up to a loss of $2,285.

This is no small matter. The vast majority of Canadians live in large urban centres.

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October 23, 2014 |
PBO analysis confirms: legislative changes to EI are hurting workers and economies in many communities in Canada.
September 19, 2014 |
More than 100 migrant agriculture workers will now receive the EI Parental Benefits they were wrongfully denied by an Employment Insurance tribunal.
| July 25, 2014
| July 16, 2014
Photo: Albert Lynn/Flickr
| February 21, 2014

Jobless but not broken: Youth workers gather to talk unemployment

"Who here has worked two or more jobs at the same time?" asked Roxanne Dubois, a staff member at Unifor and former Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) chair, to over 30 people, most under 30 years old, in a conference room at Ryerson University.

Almost every single person raised his or her hand. "And who here is in an union?" Significantly fewer people raised their hand. "And who works evenings and weekend?" she asked finally. Again, almost every hand went up. She, nor anyone else attending the Youth Un(der)employment Forum -- a day long event to discuss youth unemployment -- seemed surprised by the result.

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Photo: Dave McLean/flickr
| September 3, 2013
| July 19, 2013

Scrap the cuts: Changes to EI drive down wages for all

In the current economy, we are told, it is unlikely that you will make it through your life without being laid-off and have to search for a new job. In fact, we are told that this will actually happen more than once or twice, it will be a rather regular.

The reason for this is not that we are all bad workers, but rather because that the nature of capitalism. The economic system imposed on us has brought with it a reduction in secure employment and a massive increase in precarious work.

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