EI rules unfair for women, part-timers

Changes do little to address the issue
By Laura Cassiani
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/26/2001

Canada’s employment insurance rules discriminate against part-time workers who are primarily women because of child rearing responsibilities, a federal adjudicator has ruled.

A federal court judge, acting as an umpire under the Employment Insurance Act, found that eligibility rules discriminate against women and parents in part-time paid employment, violating equality rights guaranteed by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

New changes to the act will soon be passed in the House of Commons but critics say they only nudge towards dealing with the issues raised by this most recent case. The ruling could have far reaching implications for the employment insurance program.