BOUCTOUCHE, NB – A Liberal government will enhance the Employment Insurance system to strengthen our economy and ensure it is there for Canadian workers when they really need it, said the Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, Justin Trudeau, today.
“During challenging economic times, Canadians rely on Employment Insurance to help them get back on their feet, and to help our economy recover from downturns,” said Mr. Trudeau. “Under the Harper Conservatives, unemployed workers have been forced to move away from their families and communities, and take lower-paying jobs. We will repeal these ill-conceived changes, and introduce reliable Employment Insurance that is there for Canadians, and helps boost our country’s economic growth, now and in the future.”
A Liberal government will enhance Canada’s Employment Insurance system by:
- Reducing the waiting period for Employment Insurance benefits to one week from the current two weeks, and by ensuring higher service standards for Employment Insurance processing so that benefits are delivered more quickly and reliably;
- Ending the 910-hour eligibility penalty for workers entering or re-entering the workforce, thereby stopping the discrimination that makes it harder for our most precarious workers – such as parents returning to the workforce, younger workers, people who have left the workforce due to illness, and new Canadians – from accessing the benefits that help them get back to work;
- Increasing investment in skills training, through a $500 million annual increase in funding to the Labour Market Development Agreements with provinces. We will work with provinces and territories to ensure that these new funds support their training priorities, support initiatives that demonstrate real pathways to good quality jobs, and develop the skills that employers need to grow our economy;
- Introducing more flexible parental leave and compassionate care benefits that allow people to use their benefits in a way that works best for their families; and
- Working with the provinces and territories to assess how successfully Employment Insurance is delivering its core mandate to provide income security to workers, and how it can be improved.
“While the Conservatives give billions in benefits to the wealthiest few, and the NDP irresponsibly supports Harper’s plan, we will deliver real change so all Canadians can succeed,” said Mr. Trudeau. “After a decade of Stephen Harper, only Liberals are offering new leadership and a new plan that will make a positive difference for all Canadians.”