May. 29th, 2012

teresafloyd: (Default)
As I understand it, at some point soon Canadian seasonal workers and those who employ them will feel the impact of changes to the Unemployment Insurance system.

"The changes will mean fewer people than ever will qualify for EI, more forced into lower wage jobs and others thrown onto provincial welfare," NDP finance critic Peggy Nash said.

What is happening is people who access Unemployment Insurance benefits which are funded by all workers and employers in Canada too frequently will be required to accept jobs at lower wages and at greater distances from their homes.

Remember that New Brunswick has no trains and only a very marginal bus system for transportation (when they're not on strike). With this scheme most New Brunswick households will need to have at least two working vehicles and the gas to run them. Two because, from my personal experience, when you live in the country and work in the city it's almost impossible that you and your spouse will have the same shifts. You just wave when you meet each other along Route 8! At least the number of babies born will stay low.

This means that someone who works in the farming industry from April to October may have to drive up to an hour each way to take a job working part time at Wal Mart for the winter. He or she might as well just move to the city where the Wal Mart is located if that can be turned into full time work or if his or her spouse is also able to get a job there. Great! There's one or two seasonal workers converted to a full time workers and not making EI claims every year. Fabulous, right?

But who is planting and harvesting the potatoes? Who is doing the skilled labour of thinning seedlings in the greenhouse? Who is around to help during lambing and calving? Who is packing the apples to ship to town? You may think just anyone can do these jobs. Try it for a few days Remember that these jobs must be done quickly and safely as well as correctly.

Another alternative is to combine jobs. Maybe there are school bus drivers who know how to do these farm jobs too. In fact, I'm fairly sure that I personally know at least five or six. Great, but what about between April and June and between September and October? Can they really effectively handle working from 6 or 7 in the morning until 7 or 8 in the evening? Do we want people driving down our roads maneuvering buses loaded with our children after they've worked an evening and then a day picking apples? Is it okay for your child to ride on a bus where the driver is working 70 to 80 hours per week?

I guess the best answer is for anyone who is not currently fully employed to just go away. We don't really need farm employees, forestry workers, fisheries workers, park employees, school bus drivers, and so on. You guys go and set up New Brunswick in Ontario and Alberta. We'll follow as the economy here really tanks.

Last one out, turn off the light.


teresafloyd: (Default)

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