Improving access to EI parental benefits is the fair and right thing to do
OTTAWA, ONTARIO, April 5, 2010— On behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development , Mr. Pierre Poilievre, Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs , today announced that the Government intends to improve access to Employment Insurance (EI) parental benefits for military families.
“Canadian Forces members put their lives on the line for our country, and our government is proud to stand behind them, to assist them and their families,” said Mr. Poilievre. “ Canada has an obligation to ensure that these men and women have access to the programs and services they need. Extending the eligibility window for these benefits is the fair and right thing to do.”
This new measure would extend the EI parental benefit window for Canadian Forces members who are ordered to return to duty while on parental leave or whose parental leave is deferred as a result of a military requirement . The measure would extend the period in which they are eligible by another 52 weeks.
“ This government, like all Canadians, supports Canadian Forces members, and their families,” said Mr. Poilievre. “Canadians have proven themselves among the bravest, most skilled and most successful soldiers, sailors and airmen and women on earth. Canadian Forces members serving under vital and often challenging military operations are unable to take parental leave during their assignment.”
This is the latest in a series of improvements the Government has already made to ensure fairness in the EI program, and to ensure that EI continues to help people better adjust to labour market changes and to balance work and family responsibilities.
Through Canada’s Economic Action Plan, the federal government is helping those hardest hit by the economic downturn by providing longer EI benefits, more efficient service and support for training, while protecting jobs through Work-Sharing agreements. The Government has also frozen EI premiums for 2010 at the same rate as 2009.
Most recently, the Government extended EI maternity, parental, sickness and compassionate care benefits, collectively referred to as special benefits, to self‑employed Canadians on a voluntary basis.
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This news release is available in alternative formats on request.
For further information (media only):
Office of Minister Finley
Media Relations Office
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
Andy Chen Wang
Office of Pierre Poilievre MP
Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister & to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs
(613) 992-2772 (O)
(613) 218-9429 (C)
(613) 992-1209 (F)