The long-overdue changes being called for include permanently extending sickness benefits from 15 to 50 weeks and extending the current pilot project for seasonal workers.
“Workers have the right to have access to an employment insurance program that meets their needs, whether they’re dealing with serious illness or working through seasonal work,” said Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont—La-Petite-Patrie).
Last week, the Liberals were the only members of parliament to vote against extending sickness benefits from 15 to 50 weeks, an important measure for people who suffer, for example, from cancer. Following the vote on the motion, NDP EI Critic Daniel Blaikie introduced a bill that would permanently extend the coverage period to 50 weeks.
“The NDP has a long history of campaigning to improve access to and coverage of Employment Insurance,” said Boulerice. “The Liberals have promised to make changes, but again, their words need to be backed up by actual action.”