Fighting Conservative cuts to Employment Insurance

The Conservative government is hacking away at employment insurance benefits for Northern workers, dealing a crushing blow to temporary and seasonal workers.

PSAC protesters joined their colleagues from the Northern Territories Federation of Labour to protest the cuts outside the Greenstone Government of Canada building in Yellowknife Thursday. 

The changes mean employees in Yellowknife, Whitehorse and Iqaluit will have to work nearly twice as long before they qualify for EI, and collect benefits for only 36 weeks instead of 45. 

The move will greatly affect many Northern workers who rely on EI to make ends meet in between seasonal jobs. 

Employment Minister Jason Kenney announced the cuts during a visit to Whitehorse, arguing the Northern capitals have much lower unemployment than the rest of the territories and should have EI priviliges on par with the rest of the country, CBC reported. 

The PSAC and its allies will continue to fight Conservative attacks on its workers’ rights.