Statistics Canada reported today that 12,400 more Canadians received Employment Insurance (EI) regular benefits in January. The increase in recipients reflected higher unemployment.
Indeed, the proportion of jobless workers receiving benefits remained 39% (i.e. 561,060 beneficiaries out of 1,421,200 officially unemployed Canadians.) Only 28% of unemployed Ontarians received EI benefits in January (i.e. 163,570 beneficiaries out of 593,400 unemployed), an issue almost certain to be raised in next week’s provincial budget.
Today’s reported increase in EI recipients provides further confirmation that the job market is deteriorating. The upcoming federal budget should improve the accessibility and duration of EI benefits to help a larger proportion of unemployed Canadians. More broadly, federal and provincial budgets should focus on job creation rather than austerity, which could further damage the weak labour market.
- Ontario Budget: All Quiet on the Revenue Front (May 6th, 2013)
- Absolving our Carbon Sins: the Case of the Pacific Carbon Trust (April 2nd, 2013)
- Austerity through infrastructure Cuts: Budget 2013 (March 22nd, 2013)
- Budget 2013: Time for a real action plan, not another ad campaign (March 19th, 2013)
- The Alternative Federal Budget 2013 – Doing Better, Together (March 13th, 2013)