WHAT IS UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE?
The financial situation and the period of recession are causing a flow of lay-backs and cost cutting measures. There has been a tremendous rise in the dismissal of employees from organizations with many major companies and organizations filing for bankruptcy. This has caused a difficult situation for the person who has been laid off or has been fired from his position as an employee from the organization, or the organization has filed for bankruptcy. The situation of unemployment and no money would start tightening his financial situation with a new situation of him not being able to pay off his various debts. To guard against this situation the government of Canada has introduced regulations that were present previously for unemployment insurance, to accommodate the people who have lost their jobs.
What is the Response of the Canadian Government to this Problem?
In Canada, the system now known as Employment Insurance was formerly called Unemployment Insurance. The name was changed in 1996, in order to alleviate perceived negative connotations. In 2011, Canadian workers pay premiums of 1.78% of insured earnings in return for benefits if they lose their jobs. Employers contribute 1.4 times the amount of employee premiums. Since 1990, there is no government contribution to this fund. The amount a person receives and how long they can stay on EI varies with their previous salary, how long they were working, and the unemployment rate in their area. The EI system is managed by Service Canada, a service delivery network reporting to the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development Canada.
The concept of employment insurance grants short-term financial aid to unemployed citizens who were terminated from unemployment due to the financial failure of the companies that used to employ them. This is a temporary assistance while they try to find another job or enhance their skills. It also provides temporary financial assistance to unemployed Canadians who have lost their job through no fault of their own, while they look for work or upgrade their skills. Canadians who are sick, pregnant, or caring for a newborn or adopted child, as well as those who must care for a family member who is seriously ill with a significant risk of death, may also be assisted by Employment Insurance.
What Employment Insurance Benefits are Available to Canadians?
There are several types of benefits available to Canadians, depending on their situation:
1. Employment Insurance Regular Benefits are available to individuals who lose their jobs through no fault of their own (for example, due to shortage of work, seasonal layoffs, or mass layoffs) and who are available for and able to work, but canít find a job.
2. Employment Insurance Maternity and Parental Benefits provide support to individuals who are pregnant, have recently given birth, are adopting a child, or are caring for a newborn.
3. Employment Insurance Sickness Benefits are for individuals who are unable to work because of sickness, injury, or quarantine.
4. Employment Insurance Compassionate Care Benefits are available to people who have to be away from work temporarily to provide care or support to a family member who is gravely ill with a significant risk of death.
5. Employment Insurance Fishing Benefits provide support to qualifying, self-employed fishers who are actively seeking work.
What are Employment Insurance Initiatives?
The following are Employment Insurance Initiatives:
o Registered and qualified self-employed Canadians can access Employment Insurance (EI) special benefits: maternity, parental, sickness, and compassionate care.
o Self-employed people
o Extension of EI Regular Benefits for Long-Tenured Workers
o EI eligible long-tenured workers may be eligible to additional benefits if they have contributed to the Employment Insurance (EI) program for a significant period of time and have previously made limited use of EI regular benefits.
o Extension of Eligibility Period for Employment Insurance Parental Benefits for Military Families
o If your parental leave has been deferred or interrupted because of an imperative military requirement, the parental eligibility period during which Employment Insurance (EI) parental benefit can be paid may be extended by one week for every week that you are unable to collect EI parental benefits.
Regulations in Canada
There are different regulations that describe scenarios in Canada regarding insurance coverage for unemployment in the country. This includes pregnancy, layoff and loss of part-time employment. The payment is usually made weekly and cheques can be collected from unions or banks where they are issued. The amount varies from a small sum to sometimes part or even nearly equal to the original salary the person had been getting. The regulation has also provision for the calculations for this rate according to the previous work experience of the person.