Libby urges Minister Finley to come clean about EI changes

House of Commons


May 17, 2012

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, employees pay into EI in good faith, but under the Conservatives fewer than 40% even qualify, and they want to restrict the rules even more.

The Conservatives claim they have no plans to force Canadians to choose between EI eligibility and relocating to other parts of the country. We know now the idea was not only being discussed, it was also focus-grouped.

Canadians deserve to know the truth. Will the minister table all of the planned changes to EI in this House?

Ms. Kellie Leitch (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour, CPC):

Mr. Speaker, we support and applaud the millions of Canadians who work hard every single day to improve their lives and that of their families.  The economic action plan is committed to and has increased efforts to better connect Canadians who are unemployed with opportunities for employment. Our government has been very clear: we will connect Canadians with available jobs in their local areas.  The study in question did not inform the policy discussion that took place in this House. I look forward to the NDP finally getting on board to support a jobs plan for this country.

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives are all over the map on this.

We have the Minister of Finance who compares his summer jobs at school to unemployed teachers looking for work, while the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development thinks EI is too lucrative.

One day the Conservatives are holding focus groups about encouraging people to relocate, and the next thing they are up in the House denying it.

EI belongs to the people who paid into it, not the Conservatives. Why will it not table its plans in this House for everybody to see?