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Caregiving Consultation

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Consultation has concluded

Each year, millions of Canadians provide care to their loved ones, and they do so while balancing work and other responsibilities. What’s more, as the population ages, the demand for caregiving is expected to continue growing.

The Government of Canada recognizes that the support for caregivers provided through Employment Insurance (EI) can be difficult to access and has committed to introduce a more flexible and inclusive benefit and, for workers in federally regulated enterprises, corresponding unpaid leave provisions under the Canada Labour Code.

Caregivers currently have access to EI Caregiving Benefits and unpaid job-protected leaves through the Canada Labour Code in two specific situations. Through the Compassionate Care Benefit and the Compassionate Care Leave, eligible caregivers may receive EI benefits when they take time off work to provide end-of-life care for a family member or friend. Through the Parents of Critically Ill Children Benefit and the Leave Related to Critical Illness, eligible parents may receive EI benefits when they take time off work to provide care to a child with a life-threatening condition.

To be eligible for these or other EI special benefits (maternity, parental and sickness benefits), claimants must have accumulated at least 600 insurable hours in the 52 weeks prior to their claim and have a reduction of their employment earnings of at least 40 percent. Self-employed Canadians may also be eligible if they have opted into the EI program. EI benefits pay 55 percent of an eligible employee’s regular weekly earnings up to the maximum insurable earnings level, or a maximum of $537 per week in benefits.

The purpose of this consultation is to better understand the situations in which caregivers and their families could benefit from additional support in the form of benefits and leave.

Please read the discussion paper before submitting your views.

Each year, millions of Canadians provide care to their loved ones, and they do so while balancing work and other responsibilities. What’s more, as the population ages, the demand for caregiving is expected to continue growing.

The Government of Canada recognizes that the support for caregivers provided through Employment Insurance (EI) can be difficult to access and has committed to introduce a more flexible and inclusive benefit and, for workers in federally regulated enterprises, corresponding unpaid leave provisions under the Canada Labour Code.

Caregivers currently have access to EI Caregiving Benefits and unpaid job-protected leaves through the Canada Labour Code in two specific situations. Through the Compassionate Care Benefit and the Compassionate Care Leave, eligible caregivers may receive EI benefits when they take time off work to provide end-of-life care for a family member or friend. Through the Parents of Critically Ill Children Benefit and the Leave Related to Critical Illness, eligible parents may receive EI benefits when they take time off work to provide care to a child with a life-threatening condition.

To be eligible for these or other EI special benefits (maternity, parental and sickness benefits), claimants must have accumulated at least 600 insurable hours in the 52 weeks prior to their claim and have a reduction of their employment earnings of at least 40 percent. Self-employed Canadians may also be eligible if they have opted into the EI program. EI benefits pay 55 percent of an eligible employee’s regular weekly earnings up to the maximum insurable earnings level, or a maximum of $537 per week in benefits.

The purpose of this consultation is to better understand the situations in which caregivers and their families could benefit from additional support in the form of benefits and leave.

Please read the discussion paper before submitting your views.

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.
Discussions: All (6) Open (0)
  • Taking Leave

    almost 4 years ago
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    What factors would be most likely to influence your decision about whether or not to take a leave of absence from work to provide care to a family member?

    Replies Closed
  • Broadening access to benefits and leaves

    almost 4 years ago
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    Caregiver and Older Woman in a health-care environment

    Should anyone who needs to take time off work to provide care to a family member with a serious illness or injury and significant care needs (20 or more hours of care per week) be eligible for EI caregiving benefits and job-protected leave under the Canada Labour Code (if they work in a federally regulated enterprise), or should these benefits be provided to those caring for someone with a life-threatening condition and a sudden need for care?

    Alternatively, should some other criteria be used to broaden access to caregiving benefits and leaves?

    Please share your views and experience.



    Replies Closed
  • Benefits and job protection: Which approach would you prefer?

    almost 4 years ago
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    If a new EI benefit and unpaid job-protected leave under the Canada Labour Code were introduced, which approach would you prefer:

    1. up to 6 to 12 weeks of support, available to anyone who needs to take time off work to provide care for someone with a serious illness or injury and significant care needs (20 or more hours of care per week); or
    2. up to 26 weeks of support, available to those who need to take time off work to care for someone with a life-threatening condition and a sudden need for care?

    Please share your views and experience.


    Replies Closed
  • Unpaid leave provisions

    almost 4 years ago
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    Mother and daughter

    Should there be unpaid leave provisions under the Canada Labour Code to protect a caregiver’s job while they are off work to provide care, even if they are not eligible for EI benefits?

    Please share your views and experience.

    Replies Closed
  • Employer perspective

    almost 4 years ago
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    As an employer, if EI benefits and/or unpaid job-protected leave were made available to a wider range of caregivers, what impact would this have on your business?

    Please explain.

    A group of individuals talking around a desk
    Replies Closed
  • Additional measures?

    almost 4 years ago
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    Woman painting

    Are there any additional measures that could be taken to improve caregiving-related EI benefits and leave provisions under the Canada Labour Code for caregivers?

    Please explain.

    Replies Closed