Toronto – April 14, 2020 – New data from the federal government reveals that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused major disruptions to the Canadian labour market, with millions of workers either losing their jobs or working reduced hours due to significant interruptions to business operations.
Statistics collected for the March 2020 Labour Force Survey show that many Canadians are no longer working as they normally would, as measures to contain the COVID-19 virus intensify. Below is an adapted summary of the survey’s findings.
31,070,000: The total working-age population in Canada as of March 2020.
3.1 million: The number of Canadians who were affected by either job loss or reduced hours in March 2020 – roughly 10 percent of the working-age population.
1.3 million: The total number of people who had a job but did not work in Canada during the week of March 15 to 21.
800,000: The number of Canadians who had a job but worked less than half their usual hours during the week of March 15 to 21.
1 million fewer people aged 15 and older were classified as “employed” in Canada in March 2020 as compared to February 2020.
644,000 more Canadians aged 15 and older were classified as “not in the labour force” in March 2020 compared to February 2020.
413,000 more people aged 15 and older were classified as “unemployed” in Canada in March 2020 compared to February 2020.
In addition to these alarming numbers, 2.72 million Canadians applied for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits between March 16 and April 6, and 788,000 people had applied for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) – a form of federal income support for workers who have lost their jobs as a result of COVID-19 – as of April 6, 2020.
Source: “The Impact of COVID-19 on the Canadian Labour Market.” Statistics Canada. April 9, 2020. Online. https://bit.ly/3b8n9Kd.