From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor's rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own. Carl Schurz

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Walking a tightrope without a net

That is precisely what Harper forcing far too many Canadians to do these days. From E.I. eligibility rules that make it impossible for the most vulnerable workers to collect and forcing unemployed Canadians to move and/or accept a lower standard of employment at much less remuneration than they were making previously. To vastly expanding the Foreign Temporary Workers Program while allowing employers to pay them up to fifteen percent less than the industry norm, every move Harper Inc. makes on the labour front is designed to force Canadians into low paying precarious work and to shrink wages.

Add to the mix the fact that these low paying precarious jobs are just the type of work that typically disqualifies one for E.I. and you have a vicious cycle of ever spiraling downward loss of security and income. The inevitable break down of civil society that these policies will and is creating is so obvious and the Conservatives motives so transparent that one can only conclude this a deliberate tactic on the part of Harper inc.

As bad as all that is they are not nearly finished. For their latest installment in their plan to suppress wages and create a vast pool of cheap labour for their corporate masters, Harper Inc. has now decided to "fix" the E.I. appeals process.   Now there is no denying this process is in need of fixing, having not met it's own standards of timeliness in eleven years with only sixty-three percent of appeals having been heard in the prescribed thirty days last year.

As with everything Harper Inc. does the devil is in the details. their idea of fixing the appeals process is to get rid of the seven hundred part-time referees and replace them with thirty-nine full time staff, cumulatively this new tribunal will sit for about half the number of days that the current one sits. One would have to be brain dead to think that this will speed the process up. What we so clearly have here is yet another salvo in Harper Inc's war on working class and poor Canadians. A move designed to discourage appeals of E.I. denials and force out of work Canadians to accept whatever scraps there are out there for them in the job market.

Oh and one more thing for those who do appeal and stick out the process just remember who appointed these new adjudicators when your appeal is denied. 

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