Skip to content

EI Lags Unemployment

July 19, 2012

0-minute read

Today, Statistics Canada reported that 3,400 more Canadians received Employment Insurance (EI) benefits in May. It previously reported that unemployment rose by 8,000 that month. In other words, even more workers are now unemployed without EI benefits.

In total, just 37% of unemployed Canadians received benefits in May (i.e. 512,600 out of 1,378,600). This proportion was as low as 26% in Ontario (i.e. 148,200 out of 570,200) and 23% in Alberta (i.e. 24,000 out of 102,200).

The federal government threatens to further reduce EI coverage by making it more difficult for unemployed Canadians to receive benefits. These new restrictions were announced as part of the omnibus budget bill in May, but not yet implemented.

Erin Weir is an economist with the United Steelworkers union and a CCPA research associate.

Topics addressed in this article

Show your support

Since the beginning of the pandemic, our writers and researchers have provided groundbreaking commentary and analysis that has shaped Canada's response to COVID-19. We've fought for better supports for workers affected by pandemic closures, safer working conditions on the frontline, and more. With the launch of the new Monitor site, we're working harder than ever to share even more progressive news, views and ideas for Canada's road to recovery. Help us grow.

Support the Monitor