A new study by the CLC shows the federal government has been padding its yearly budget surpluses with money taken from the lowest paid workers in the country.
The difference between what UI collects in premiums and what it pays out in benefits had grown to almost $40 billion by the end of 1999. It is expected to pass the $50-billion mark by this time next year.
The CLC research shows most of this surplus came from low-income families. Nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) came from families who earned $20,000 a year or less. Fully one-third of workers who lost access to UI coverage earned less than $10,000 while people earning $50,000 or more a year remained fully covered.