Steelworkers Welcome Extended EI Benefits

OTTAWA, Oct. 7 /CNW/ - The United Steelworkers union is endorsing the New Democratic Party's move to ensure that Parliament enacts the proposed extension of Employment Insurance (EI) benefits for some long-tenured workers (Bill C-50).

Today, the union's Canadian Director, Ken Neumann, sent a letter to Minister Diane Finley noting that the proposal will extend "additional weeks of EI benefits to thousands of unemployed Canadians, including many members of my union, who otherwise would have run out of benefits."

"The New Democratic Party has been a tireless ally in the fight for needed EI reform," said Neumann. "After months of union advocacy and Parliamentary pressure, the government has finally offered a meaningful, though limited, improvement."

However, Neumann's letter also questions provisions of Bill C-50 that will arbitrarily exclude some long-tenured workers from the extended benefits. It presses the case for broader, permanent EI reforms "to increase the accessibility, level and duration of benefits for all unemployed workers."

"Canadian families and communities are hurting and need a much better E.I. program. Let's pass this improvement quickly, and then get on with implementing additional improvements that are so desperately needed," said a determined Ken Neumann.

The full letter from Ken Neumann to Minister Finley can be found at:

SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)

For further information: For further information: Ken Neumann, (416) 544-5950; Bob Gallagher, (416) 544-5966, (416) 434-2221,

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