Morneau Shepell Report Shows People Accessing for Support on Debt/Credit
Due to Economy
TORONTO, Sept. 13, 2011 /CNW/ - Almost two out of every three times that
people accessed their employer's EAP (Employee Assistance Program) for
financial assistance last year, it was for personal debt and/or credit.
The Morneau Shepell Research Group has just released a report showing
how EAP access in Canada changed from 2010 as compared to 2009, and the
results might be a barometer of the country's economic health.
"In 2010 EAP access for debt and credit counselling definitely went up,"
said Karen Seward, Executive Vice-President, Business Development and
Marketing, Morneau Shepell. "This indicates that the fallout of the
financial crisis was continuing as employees tried to work their way
out of debt. And now that the credit rating of the U.S. has been
downgraded to an historic low and the global economy spirals downward,
we expect this to continue.
"We also had a significant decrease in EAP access for things like
investment planning, real estate, mortgages and taxes. This shows that
attention to investments was obviously not a priority last year."
The report, called Impact of the Financial Crisis on EAP Usage from 2009-2010, showed that 63.2 per cent of all financial-related accesses last year
- almost two out of three - were for debt/credit issues. That was
followed by divorce/finances at 8.7 per cent, bankruptcy at 7.4 per
cent, retirement at 5.7 per cent, and taxes at 4.6 per cent. At the
same time, EAP access for investment planning dropped significantly
from 2009. The report showed a:
80.7 per cent decrease in cases involving investment planning
44.4 per cent decrease in issues involving real estate and mortgages
28.6 per cent decrease for tax issues.
Proportionally, all financial EAP accesses decreased in 2010 except for
debt/credit-related issues. The types of support being accessed
included counselling for debt/credit, bankruptcy, and other financial
problems. Specialized financial counselling and consultation for
retirement, job loss, divorce, estate planning, and investment planning
was also accessed.
Employees Seek Help with Debt/Credit Problems / 2
Said Seward: "Our findings indicate that accesses for financial
counselling and consultation are showing a decreasing trend. The
leading financial issues for which employees contacted their EAP have
changed somewhat over the past two years with approximately 50 per cent
of accesses concerning debt/credit issues in 2009 increasing to well
over 60 per cent in 2010. As for investment planning, there was a
significant decrease in accesses from approximately 20 per cent in 2009
to only 4 per cent in 2010."
Seward said that, in light of the current economy, she expects EAP
access for such financial matters as investment planning, real estate
and mortgages, and tax issues to continue to decrease throughout this
year. However, people need to be focused on planning and investment to
ensure a better future.
Morneau Shepell is the largest Canadian-based firm offering industry
leading benefits and pension consulting, outsourcing, as well as health
and productivity solutions. The company works with clients to develop
innovative solutions that integrate with their business strategies to
achieve results. Through Benefits and Health Solutions Consulting,
Pension Consulting, Health Management, Administration Solutions and
Shepell-fgi's Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and Organizational
Solutions and Training, Morneau Shepell helps clients reduce costs,
increase employee productivity, and improve their competitive positions
by supporting their employees' financial security, health and
Established in 1962, Morneau Shepell has grown to serve over 13,000
clients, ranging from small businesses to some of the largest
corporations and associations in North America. Headquartered in
Toronto, Ontario, it has offices in the United States and over 95
locations across Canada. Morneau Shepell Inc. is a publicly traded
company on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). For more information,
Shepell-fgi is Canada's leading provider of workplace health and
productivity solutions, including prevention-focused Employee
Assistance Programs (EAPs), Organizational Solutions and Training. The
company serves over ten million employees and their families across
Canada, the United States and internationally. Shepell-fgi helps
organizations maintain healthy employees and healthy workplaces. Visit www.shepellfgi.com.
SOURCE Morneau Shepell Ltd.
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