Canada Service centre documents that display Employment Insurance options are pictured in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2015. Newly released research says broad swaths of the Canadian workforce won’t have access to paid leave by their employers or existing federal help should they be forced off the job due to COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Study says few workers have paid leave, qualify for EI if off job due to COVID-19

Experts says federals will likely have to create an emergency benefit for workers who can’t access EI benefits

New research says broad swaths of the Canadian workforce won’t have access to paid leave from their employers or existing federal help should they be forced off the job due to COVID-19.

The research note from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says 38 per cent of sickness leave and 23 per cent of family leave of more than a week was covered by employers in 2019.

About three-quarters of workers in higher-paying jobs had time off covered by their employers, while just over 10 per cent of workers in the lowest income decile received a similar benefit last year.

The report says further complicating issues is that the most unemployed workers didn’t qualify for employment insurance benefits in 2018, the most recent numbers of available.

David Macdonald, the centre’s senior economist, says most of the workers who could use financial assistance can’t easily work from home right now, meaning closed schools, self-isolation or quarantine will mean lost shifts and plummeting incomes.

He says the federal government will likely have to create an emergency benefit for workers who can’t access EI benefits as part of an economic response package Finance Minister Bill Morneau is to unveil this week.

ALSO READ: Great Canadian to close 10 B.C. casinos amid COVID-19 worries

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cowichan couple won’t self-isolate after returning from overseas

New law requires 14 days of self-isolation when returning to Canada

Volunteer Cowichan encouraging anyone in need to reach out

Programs available for seniors but also others in the community who need support

MacGregor addresses federal response to COVID-19

Cowichan-Malahat-Langford MP spoke to constituents via Facebook

Getting the runaround on reporting quarantine violation

Non-actions speak louder than words during COVID-19 pandemic

Trudeau rejects mandatory stay-at-home order for now; COVID deaths up

The virus has now infected more than 10,000 Canadians and cost 130 their lives

Long list of events disrupted by COVID-19 around the community

Challenging situation affecting fundraisers, entertainment, sports and more

Cowichan couple won’t self-isolate after returning from overseas

New law requires 14 days of self-isolation when returning to Canada

Family uses social media to help truckers find places to eat during pandemic

Restaurants Serving Drivers in Western Canada seeks to provide a list of places open for drivers

B.C. health officer says homemade masks may prevent spread of COVID-19 to others

Practising physical distancing, frequent hand washing and resisting touching your face are proven methods

B.C.’s senior home staff measures show results in COVID-19 battle

Dr. Bonnie Henry’s order restricts care aides to one facility

Independent investigation praises RCMP actions in Vancouver Island suicide attempt

Man hurt in incident that took place near Nanoose Bay in September of 2019

‘A matter of human decency’: Truckers’ union calls on gas stations, rest stops to fully re-open

Teamsters Canada wants feds, provinces to put pressure on facilities to re-open for transport workers

Most Read