OTTAWA â€“ Todayâ€™s announcement to further restrict EI qualifications is just another example of bad news for Canadians hidden within the Conservativesâ€™ Trojan Horse budget bill, according to the NDP.
â€œThe Minister has failed the most basic test of accountability when it comes to these new restrictions,â€� said New Democrat Finance Critic Peggy Nash. â€œConservative Ministers have been making up a different story everyday and are simply mismanaging Employment Insurance. They didnâ€™t even bother to consult Canadians, or the provinces, before announcing these arbitrary changes.â€�
The changes will mean fewer people than ever will qualify for EI, more forced into lower wage jobs and others thrown onto provincial welfare. Additionally, the Minister still refuses to explain the changes, including what she means by â€œsuitable employment.â€�
â€œThis government forgets that EI belongs to the employees and employers who paid into it, not to the Conservatives,â€� said NDP Employment Insurance critic Anne-Marie Day. â€œAt the end of the day, the same minister who accused unemployed Canadians of wanting to stay on EI because its â€˜lucrativeâ€™ is now saying: just trust me. Canadians donâ€™t trust Conservatives to manage EI in a balanced way.â€�
Todayâ€™s new EI restrictions come just a day after Canadians learned that the Human Resources Minister is refusing to provide Statistics Canada with key data about unemployment and EI effectiveness.
â€œWith less data, it will be even harder for us to know the actual impact of these changes. And the Conservativesâ€™ Trojan Horse Budget bill gives substantial new powers to the Minister to arbitrarily change EI rules in the future,â€� said Nash. â€œItâ€™s simply appalling to sneak these changes through in a budget bill.â€�
For more information, please contact:
Marc-AndrÃ© Viau, Lead Caucus Press Secretary, 613-295-9228 or Marc-Andre.Viau@parl.gc.ca