Youth hiring incentive retracted
Small businesses concerned over employment insurance premiums
By Georgia Longphee, Staff Writer
A recent government retraction of a promise to implement a youth hiring incentive to small business owners where premiums on EI rates would be slashed has struck controversy in the Employment services field.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses (CFIB) has submitted a report in light of the upcoming Employment Insurance review addressing the concerns of small businesses and offering guidance to policymakers as they consider major changes to the system.
“Small businesses tell us that payroll taxes, like EI, are their number one concern, and that even a small increase in EI premiums would come at the worst possible time, particularly given plans to increase CPP,” said Dan Kelly, CFIB president.
“While employees and large employers are expected to see their rates drop in 2017, small employers will actually pay a little more, due to the end of the Small Business Job Credit.”
The CFIB report reflects strong support of one of the newest government election promises: giving a 12-month break on employer premiums for all small businesses who hire employees between the ages of 18 and 24 in the years 2016-2018. However, CFIB – along with many small business owners – were disappointed when the government retracted this incentive in the 2016 budget cut.
But what could this mean to possible employees who could’ve benefitted from this incentive?
The target age group of the incentive are typically the ages where employment by small businesses are needed the most. Those ages 18 to 24 are the most likely to need these kind of jobs due to fees such as rent or student loans, and giving an incentive to businesses to hire these students in need would positively affect the future of these students.
The retraction of this incentive has dumbfounded many high officials – such as those CFIB – but the people who should really worry about trying to get it back in motion are university students who would greatly benefit from this incentive passing. Not only would it give small businesses the motivation to hire university students, it would also encourage them to train those employees thoroughly, giving those employees a better chance at finding jobs in the future.