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Harper government changes Employment Insurance into workfare

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Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

Those who don't use foreign labour -- and they are the majority, will love this. The Canadians forced into those jobs will hardly be the most empowered of Canadian workers and those who might want to express some rights would likely be outnumbered anyway.


Fidel
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Joined: Apr 29 2004

Bacchus wrote:

Which would end majority governments ever after to the betterment of Canada

 

I think Brian Mulroney would still have won a majority in 1984 by a fair voting system. I think the difference is that he would have lost the majority by 1988 for having lied to voters in the 1984 campaign. With FPTP his previous lies didn't hurt them.

I think the fear among the right is that with a fair voting system, parties like the NDP might actually win true majorities and maintain them over more than one term in power. I think it would be more possible to pursue alternatives to neoliberalism over sustained periods as a result.


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

Just because it piqued my interest here are some stats.

In 1984 the PC's got 50% of the votes.  So under a fair system they should have won 142 out of 284 seats.  They won 211.  In 1988 they got 43% of the vote and should have 127 out of 295.  They won 169.

http://www.sfu.ca/~aheard/elections/1867-2004.html

Quebec in 1984 gave the PC's the same 50% as the national average.  They won 58 out of the 75 seats. 

In 1988 the people of Quebec after gave the PC's 63 seats and increased their percentage to almost 53%.  BC voted under 47% for the PC's in 1984 and in 1988 after getting to know Lying Brian less than 35% of my neighbours voted PC and their seat count went from 19 to 12.

http://pdba.georgetown.edu/Elecdata/Canada/parl84.html

http://pdba.georgetown.edu/Elecdata/Canada/parl88.html

Since I consider the Free Trade agreements to be the single biggest cause of our 25 years of decline and the rise of the 1% I try to bite my hand to stop typing curses at people who tell me what a progressive force Quebec has always been compared everyone else in the country.  I would agree that on many fronts that has been true except for that one LITTLE mistake that has cost most citizens dearly. During the 1980's I was fighting the restraint and roll backs by Bennett and the attacks on my trade union. Quebec progressives were rallying to get free trade with the US. C'est la vie.


Fidel
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Joined: Apr 29 2004

I didn't realize that, Kropotkin. We need to have everyone be progressing at the same time in this country. 


takeitslowly
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Joined: May 31 2009

 

I am trying to apply for EI, but even if I took a job as an "outbound telemarketer" or a commission only job or some marketing jobs, there will be no guarantee that I will even be able to keep that job for more than one or two days.

 

The government can force us to work all they want, but many of the jobs out there are scam and what happened when the new job doesn't work out? Do we have to reapply EI and how long will that take?

 

I blame Canadians for this mess. I am so disappointed in this country. And i dont believe people will do anything drastic even if things become worse here, the people in Spain or Greece could not change their fate even though they are in dire situation.


Dostoyevsky
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Joined: Dec 19 2011

Who/what is the source of this information?  Some poster on Rabble?


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

@ Dostoyevsky I take it you mean the source of the information about the initiative?

I am sorry you are right I should have provided a link. The news was everywhere on the day I posted and the below is just one of many articles.

Kenney was saying that the government would make people take labour jobs migrant workers usually do or get cut off. Each article seems to have a different part of the story but all the quotes are consistent.

Hope this helps.

 

http://www.canada.com/business/recipients+forced+accept+jobs+filled+temp...

OTTAWA - As part of the Harper government's upcoming immigration reforms, employment insurance recipients may be forced to take jobs that would otherwise be filled by temporary foreign workers.

The federal government wants to reduce disincentives to work and create a "greater connection" between the EI program and the temporary foreign worker program, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney told the National Post editorial board this week.

"If you don't take available work, you don't get EI," he said. "That's always been a legal principle of that program."

Under the proposed reforms, unemployed Canadians who are receiving EI would be required to accept local jobs that are currently being filled by temporary foreign workers.

"What we will be doing is making people aware there's hiring going on and reminding them that they have an obligation to apply for available work and to take it if they're going to qualify for EI," Kenney said.

"It makes no sense to bring in people from abroad when there are Canadians just across the street willing to do the work," Kenney's spokeswoman Alexis Pavlich told Postmedia News Thursday.

 


Doug
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Joined: Apr 17 2001

takeitslowly wrote:

 

I am trying to apply for EI, but even if I took a job as an "outbound telemarketer" or a commission only job or some marketing jobs, there will be no guarantee that I will even be able to keep that job for more than one or two days.

 

That's probably, as they say, a feature and not a bug. Force somebody to take a temporary job and they both lose their remaining weeks of EI and they may not work enough hours to get to apply again.


takeitslowly
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Joined: May 31 2009

Doug wrote:

takeitslowly wrote:

 

I am trying to apply for EI, but even if I took a job as an "outbound telemarketer" or a commission only job or some marketing jobs, there will be no guarantee that I will even be able to keep that job for more than one or two days.

Thanks for responding, Doug...I dont like how they set up EI, they dont make sense for workers. We are treated like people who dont want to work instead of people who need to receive the insurance we paid for ourselves.

That's probably, as they say, a feature and not a bug. Force somebody to take a temporary job and they both lose their remaining weeks of EI and they may not work enough hours to get to apply again.


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

What's the point of paying into EI if the Cons won't let you collect it?


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

Come on now the real changes have been around since shortly after NAFTA.  Most workers in Canada have been made ineligible for EI/UI a long time ago. People in their twenties mostly work more than one job but pay into the plan on all jobs.  Only full time workers are really covered and that is the category of worker that keeps falling.

In the '80's many of us said that the lower US standards in benefits would become Canadian policy.  The progressives in Quebec and the red necks in Alberta argued that free trade with the US would bring both greater provincial autonomy and also economic growth.  I fucking hate the fact that dire predictions like the ones I made in the late 1980's have come true.

Hard to only blame western rednecks for actions taken by both them and the Quebec federal political elite.

Is restoring the EI surplus still NDP policy or is that also now too controversial?

Quote:

A significant part of the federal fiscal surplus of the Jean Chrétien and Paul Martin years came from the EI system. Premiums were reduced much less than falling expenditures - producing, from 1994 onwards, EI surpluses of several billion dollars per year, which were added to general government revenue.[5] The cumulative EI surplus stood at $57 billion at March 31, 2008,[6] nearly four times the amount needed to cover the extra costs paid during a recession.[7] This drew criticism from Opposition parties and from business and labour groups, and has remained a recurring issue of the public debate. The Conservative Party, after voicing much the same criticism while in opposition,[8] chose not to recognize existing EI surpluses after being elected in 2006. Instead, the Conservative government adopted in 2008 and 2009 legislation freezing the EI surplus indefinitely and putting EI premiums on a pay-as-you-go basis, so that - starting in 2011 - they will fluctuate in line with changes in unemployment levels.[9]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unemployment_benefits


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

There is a difference between requiring those on EI to look for work and actually connecting them to a job they are not allowed to refuse without losing their benefits. The fact that this is also supposed to be labour work "most Canadians do not want to do" -- becuase the conditions or salaries are too poor makes it all the worse.


Arthur Cramer
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Joined: Nov 30 2010

Sean, bang on as always. Have your or anyone else heard the NDP speak on this? This Tories are contemptible.


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

The Conservatives are just the latest in a long line of neo-con wrecking crews.  There is so little left of the safety net from the 1970's the latest cuts have not just cut into the bone they've gone right to the marrow. If successive people stab you is it only the last one that should be blamed for your murder even if they used the biggest knife?

Is the NDP saying it will reverse this and restore the surplus to the EI fund?


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

Arthur Cramer wrote:

Sean, bang on as always. Have your or anyone else heard the NDP speak on this? This Tories are contemptible.

Not really-- the media is reporting it and columnists are writing about it but I have not seen anything official from the NDP. This is a breaking story and I suspect people are working on it.


takeitslowly
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Joined: May 31 2009

we still dont know exactly what kind of changes we will be seeing...I think theres a problem if we are forced into a job where the supervisor is abusive and the work environment is toxic. Many places are like that, but i dont mind if the government want to hook me up with a job , i just dont want to be exploited and suffer psychological damages from going to work.


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

If you land one of those jobs on your own and have an employer who is nasty you will likely not be able to collect EI anyways because they are sure to accuse you of one of the following if you show any inclination to stand up for any rights you might think that you deserve. Standing up for your rights in a workplace is usually seen at a minimum as insubordination.

I guess what I am trying to drive home is that the EI system is broken badly and is not currently available for most young workers. We need a complete overhaul of the system and it is time that the NDP stopped reacting and started proposing real effective changes in the system that will restore a safety net for the young workers in their teens, twenties and thirties.  This same demographic has had most company benefits two tiered out of existence. That now includes too many union workplaces.

What is the overhaul needs to be the debate not a rear guard action against the latest cuts to the system.  We need to start discussing alternatives to the Harper agenda not just opposition.  Of course the NDP MP's should be voting and speaking against the changes but I would hope they would then move immediately into the reforms that they would be tabling if they were government.

Service Canada wrote:

Actions, omissions or faults judged as misconduct

Various reasons may prompt an employer to fire an employee due to misconduct. The following actions or omissions are considered to be the most frequent situations of misconduct:

We can conclude that there is no misconduct when the reason for the dismissal is due to incompetence, unsatisfactory performance, inaptitude to perform certain duties or inexperience, unless these actions, omissions or faults are done wilfully or are the result of unwillingness.


Slumberjack
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Joined: Aug 8 2005

kropotkin1951 wrote:
Is the NDP saying it will reverse this and restore the surplus to the EI fund?

We've been told on more than one occasion that the NDP are operating in the same globalized neo-liberal climate just like everyone else, and just like everyone else granted temporary custodial management of the associated processes, they'll have to do as they're told should the decisions fall to them.


Fidel
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Joined: Apr 29 2004

$50 billion stolen from the EI fund, and another $31 billion removed from health transfers to the provinces. 

You get one protest every four years that actually counts for anything.

2015. Get ready.


Fidel
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Joined: Apr 29 2004

Expect More from Your Government Don't let 'surplus powerlessness' lead to apathy. To restore the Canada Harper unmade, try fair taxation.

Murray Dobbin wrote:
First, in a development that is virtually unprecedented, inequality has become, by far, Canadians' top concern, displacing the perennial front-runner, medicare. And closely related are a number of polls showing that Canadians in large majorities think wealthy people and corporations should pay more taxes. They are also willing to pay more themselves.
How these attitudes will play out over the longer term is hard to predict. Other trends are not so encouraging.

For Canadians and opposition parties the time for lowered expectations is over. Expect more.


madmax
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Joined: Apr 15 2008
madmax wrote:
I believe this is a red herring. The announcement is being made by the Minister who is about to embark on the Largest Recruitment of Foreign Temp Agency workers this country has ever seen. The Minister who breached this subject first was NOT Diane Finley, but Jason Kenney. I will put it out there for discussion, that this charade is to bring into Canada a significantly larger number foreign, likely Asian and most likely Chinese workers in the hundreds of thousands to work in the Western Provinces oil sector. This practice already exist and for those who don't know about it.. read the link below to see the benefits of foreign labour in the oil sector. These guys just happened to get caught...because of a tragedy. These workers made $600 per month in Fort McMurray. http://www.fortmcmurraytoday.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=2557013&archive=true Regardless announcing that your are going to bring into the country Hundreds of thousands of foreign temp workers isn't politically popular so it must be masked. And here is how its done. 1) Announce you are cutting back on immigration to play to your base. 2) Make a scapegoat and attack the lazy unemployed and Fix EI the Conservative way. Traditional Conservative Wedge politics. Now, I think China needs oil and alberta needs a pipeline, fast, quick and cheap.
I am quoting myself to pick up where I left off as the 2nd piece of the puzzle was announced as I expected. Finlay announces in Alberta low wage immigration policy http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1169568--walkom-otta... But in reality, the federal Conservative government’s entire immigration policy is geared to just one goal: lowering wages. On Wednesday, Finley journeyed to Alberta to announce that Ottawa will make it easier — not harder — for employers to hire temporary foreign skilled workers. More importantly, she said Ottawa will allow employers to pay such foreign workers 15 per cent less than the prevailing wage. Up to now, employers had to pay temporary foreign skilled workers the going rate. If comparable Canadian workers in an area received on average, say, $20 an hour, foreign workers would have to be paid the same. No more. The temporary foreign workers program began as a stop-gap measure in 2000, specifically to deal with a shortage of software specialists. But under pressure from employers — particularly in the Alberta oil patch — it has vastly expanded.

Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

It is very purposefully going to be used to drive down wages.

These are serious developments.

Of course they are policy but not structural (unlike other changes the government is making) so these can be reversed as long as this government gets defeated.


takeitslowly
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Joined: May 31 2009

kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

Your link goes to Facebook. Do you have a link to the actual story?


Caissa
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Joined: Jun 14 2006
kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

Thx Caissa

That Asshole Flaherty wrote:

"That means we are going to have to encourage more persons with disabilities to work, more seniors to work, more aboriginal people to work, including young people. We need to get rid of disincentives in the employment insurance system to people joining the workforce."

Damn those urbanites send them to the boonies where their labour is needed. Hell I don't know and don't care how they are supposed to move a family across the continent to work at the Tim's in Bald Headed Prairie, Alberta.   Screw you if your disabled, why aren't you selling pencils on a street corner? Of course seniors should have amassed enough wealth to not need EI and for those that haven't it is only because of moral shortcomings. Get to work you lazy old farts.  So what if you are an unemployed university graduate with $40,000 in debt and trying to exist on the EI your getting from your TA job while you find a way to put your education and talents to use. Go pick fruit, that is what your country needs from you.  And this is notice to FN's that not a penny of EI money will flow into any isolated reserve.  Who cares where you worked to qualify for EI you can move south for a job so fuck you and your belief that you can live where you want.  [the above is a parody of Flaherty]

 I imagine he must have been a great supporter of the Maoist Cultural Revolution.


Caissa
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Joined: Jun 14 2006

I thought he would be proud of Pol Pot as well.


shartal@rogers.com
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Joined: Mar 14 2011
In addition to all the above the shift of the EI entitlement threshold from 20 weeks of work regardless of the total hours to the current approximately 700 hours of work means that in Toronto less than 30% of the Total population who pay into EI qualify for benefits. Thus over 70% of the people who pay in do not qualify for benefits. In addition not qualifying for EI also means no sick benefits.

shartal@rogers.com
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Joined: Mar 14 2011
In addition to all the above the shift of the EI entitlement threshold from 20 weeks of work regardless of the total hours to the current approximately 700 hours of work means that in Toronto less than 30% of the Total population who pay into EI qualify for benefits. Thus over 70% of the people who pay in do not qualify for benefits. In addition not qualifying for EI also means no sick benefits.

bagkitty
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Joined: Aug 27 2008

A post wishing grievous harm on an individual would be a violation of the rules of behaviour for babble, wouldn't it?

*cue the line from the old Red Rose tea commercial*

 


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