New EI region on P.E.I. 'does nothing'
Rural P.E.I. region will better serve high unemployment area, says government
The announcement of a new employment insurance region on P.E.I. won't help Islanders who depend on the service, says Wayne Easter, the Liberal MP for Malpeque.
On Thursday Gail Shea, the Island's representative in the federal cabinet, announced that this October P.E.I. would be split into two employed insurance regions. People in the area outside of Charlottetown would require fewer hours to earn benefits, and could potentially earn benefits for a longer period of time.
Shea said the changes will help Islanders in rural areas with higher unemployment get more income support. Easter said the move does nothing to deal with problems caused by the government's changes to EI.
"This does nothing … with the wait times, which we know now are as long as eight weeks and longer sometimes. It does nothing to deal with the clawback measures, which is taking 50 per cent of the dollars earned while working while unemployed," he said.
"The government just isn't dealing effectively with the problems they've created."
Provincial Innovations Minister Allen Roach also expressed his disappointment with the announcement, saying it addresses none of the concerns he has raised with Ottawa.