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New employment insurance regions affect weeks of benefits

Compare how new EI regions on P.E.I. will affect benefits available.

On Oct. 12 everyone on P.E.I. will see changes in how their employment insurance benefits are calculated.

Currently the entire Island is one region for employment insurance purposes. Come October, the province will be split in two: Charlottetown, comprising the city itself and a surrounding area stretching up to parts of the North Shore; and P.E.I., the western and eastern ends of the province.

People who live in the Charlottetown region will require more hours of work to qualify for EI than they currently do, and people who live in the P.E.I. region will require fewer, but the changes are more complex than that. Regardless of how many hours a person has worked when applying for EI the new zones will have an impact.

CBC News has put together this chart to illustrate specifically weeks of benefits available in the P.E.I. EI regions, both old and new.

For mobile device users:View the chart here

Gail Shea, P.E.I.'s representative in the federal cabinet, said the changes will better reflect differences in job opportunities in rural and urban P.E.I.

That has left some Islanders wondering why the Charlottetown region includes some areas that are clearly rural, such as New Glasgow, Rice Point and Afton Road.

Human Resources Development Canada is using a map created by Statistics Canada that's redrawn after every census. It defines the greater Charlottetown region depending on how many people in the area commute into Charlottetown for work.

One area of rural P.E.I. was only just added to the greater Charlottetown region in 2011, due to a jump in the number of people commuting to Charlottetown.

Laura Chapin explains how the region is defined on Island Morning, including how the region could change again in 2016.

Listen here.

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