The number of people on EI in Alberta has doubled over the past year. In December 2014 just over 31,000 people were receiving benefits; that increased to nearly 62,500 at the end of last year.
The province lost an estimated 19,600 jobs last year, and it’s clear that it’s not just laid off oil workers feeling the pinch. According to Statistics Canada, claims went up in almost all major occupation groups in December. The largest increase of 6.8 per cent was in management jobs.
Nationwide, the number of Canadians getting employment insurance benefits is up more than seven per cent, but most of that was from Alberta’s surge.