CBC Community members share their EI experiences
Human Resources Minister Diane Finley revealed plans for reforming the employment insurance system Thursday. (Blair Gable/Reuters)Yesterday's story revealing some details of the EI reform has nearly 3,000 comments.
Some members of the CBC Community are sharing their stories of applying for and living on EI. This comment by princessdee1 is in reply to Gregory Thomas of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, who said, "If you've been collecting pogey more than one year in the past five, maybe it's time to get some training, find a different line of work, or move to where the jobs are."
"I was laid off in March 2011. My EI did not start until May and was only for 38 weeks duration as I was penalized for receiving severance pay. By the time my EI ran out in the last week of January, I had applied for 52 positions in my chosen career field. I was only called for 6 interviews. As of today, that has ballooned to more than 70 positions applied for.
"I hold two diplomas (one honours) in Business Administration Management. I have eleven years experience in administration. My previous employment includes retail management & construction (carpentry). Mr. Thomas, I ask "What training could I possibly obtain that would further my employment prospects? "
"Since my EI ran out, I have been applying for jobs outside of my skill set - cleaning, newspaper courier, mail sorter, inventory clerk, etc. Mr. Thomas, what makes you think that looking for another line of work translates into obtaining another line of work. Employers will NOT hire over qualified, above average educated (more than high school), mature (45+) job seekers even when they advertise (only 15-20% of jobs are advertised) positions that state 'NO EXPERIENCE REQUIRED.'
"Move? How? I am now on income assistance. Will the provincial government pay for me to travel to other parts of the province or country for interviews and then pay to bring me home? Will they pay my moving expenses because I think I might have more luck finding a job somewhere else? No, they won't.
"Once again, bureaucrats and their followers make statements without doing their homework first."
CathyStJohn is currently on EI.
"If I had my choice I would definitely be working. The only drawback I see here is that those of us who want to work cannot make those companies we apply to hire us. I wish it were that simple.
"In talking to employers that I have applied to the average number of applicants are around 250 per job. How does one compete with 249 other individuals who have the same qualifications as yourself? I have expanded my job search but I can't expand much further before it will be costing me more than I will potentially be making to go to work."
CBC Community member puzzling said that not all people who draw EI every year is an "abuser."
"Why are people constantly drawing EI? Perhaps it might be because we have to. Bills do not wait and temporary agencies do not always have work.
"I traveled 2 hrs at minimum wage to take temp work when there is none available in my community. I will not pay over $20.00 for a cab and preferably less when the public transit does not have proper hours. I have a family member who gets dizzy at times and who I will not leave at home every night.
"Some people draw EI not because they do not want to work but because no one will hire them."
valleygirl2011 got a lot of response in the comments with her posts:
"I am a substitute teacher who does not work in the summer as there are no teaching jobs in my area during that time. So I file for EI as I do not have a contract for work starting in September. If I had a full time job I wouldn't need EI!
"I am a married woman with a child on the way. I don't think leaving for 2 months in the summer is an option. Not to mention who is going to hire someone for 2 months knowing they are only there temporary.
"I went to university for 5 years to teach. For 10 months of the year I pay into EI. Why should I look for work not related to teaching in a classroom when the profession I paid thousands of dollars to earn my degree in isn't available during a certain period of time?"
And CBC Community members who support the government's EI reforms also shared their personal experiences.
- "Can't find a job? Well, you're obviously not looking hard enough. Yes, sometimes you DO have to take a lower paying job - deal with it. I did. Then I created my OWN job - self employed. It takes hard work, and I cannot collect EI (nor do I pay into it). But it's all mine, and I earn a reasonable living," said TimsRant.
- "The problem isn't lack of jobs. The problem is lack of people willing to do crappy jobs. I have had to take my share of crappy jobs (telemarketing anyone?) But you work hard and put yourself through school to improve your skills and get a better job," said rural watchdog.
Thank you, as always, for following our coverage. Please feel free to comment on or challenge any of these points and continue the conversation below.
Meet the Community Team
CBC News Community team, from left to right: Andrew Yates, Andrea Lee-Greenberg, Lauren O'Neil, John Bowman
If you're part of the CBC News community, you're likely to meet one of us: we're the folks working to produce and promote your stories. Read more about us.
Other Your Community Entries
- 2012 (1185)
- Douglas Adams fans celebrate Towel Day
- CBC Community members share their EI experiences
- Vote for our May photo contest winner!
- Are moon rocks priceless or worthless?
- Canadian woman continues tweeting her way to the top of Everest
- Come share your photos and video in the CBC Your News Community!
- Doggie nail art gets tongues wagging
- May photo contest: Pewter Sunflower
- Call Me Maybe business cards take dating world by storm
- Vancouver Bieber fans in disbelief over tour snub
- Should government seek clemency for Canadians on death row?
- Ugly Meter app worries cyber bullying activists
- And the winner of our April showers photo contest is...
- What would you add to Avery Canahuati's bucket list?
- Who is Titanic II backer Clive Palmer?
- Trending April 30: Titanic II, Conrad Black
- Should Conrad Black regain his Canadian citizenship?
- CBC's David McKie on investigative reporting
- Should rooftop missiles be installed for London Olympics security?
- Obama and Kimmel high-five at White House Correspondents' Dinner
- March photo contest: the winner!
- Shatner-hosted 2012 Juno Awards inspire fanfare
- 10 readers share their Katimavik stories
- Katimavik defended 26 years after Hébert hunger strike
- Earth Hour, Mega Millions, angry 'Beliebers' in morning trends
- Maple syrup hoarders prepare for shortage
- Top 5 at 5: CBC North
- Would bigger tax exemptions encourage you to shop across the border?
- What were your happiest years?
- Should charities lose their status for protesting?
- Community reaction to the Pierre Poutine revelations
- Top 5 at 5: Business stories
- Lady Gaga and Oprah Winfrey launch anti-bullying foundation
- Davy Jones honoured by fans on social media
- February photo contest: the winner!
- Women take the leap and propose marriage on Feb. 29
- Community reaction to closing of high Arctic lab
- Would you freeze-dry a deceased pet?
- U.S. storm watchers swap stories on social media
- Should Canada create an asbestos registry?
- January photo contest: the winner
- Top 5 at 5: Montreal stories
- Should Peru's uncontacted tribes be left alone?
- Is Ashton Kutcher right to block journalists from his Twitter feed?
- Would you wear Dress Pant Sweatpants in your workplace?
- Where do you donate your used clothing?
- Could a UN resolution help end Syria's unrest?
- Top 5 at 5: Politics stories
- Do you trust a camel that predicts Super Bowl winners?
- Community reaction to the Shafia trial verdict
- May (137)