Canadian Labour Congress

Canadian Labour Congress

June 06, 2008 10:20 ET

Canadian Labour Congress/Employment: Growing Signs of Weakness

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 6, 2008) - "Forty thousand part-time jobs don't offset the loss of thirty-two thousand full-time jobs. And this is only one of the many signs of a weakening economy to be found in today's Statistics Canada's Labour Force Survey," says Ken Georgetti, president of the Canadian Labour Congress. (See below detailed analysis by the Canadian Labour Congress' Senior Economist Sylvain Schetagne).

Adds Georgetti: "This month's surge in part-time jobs follows last month's report that in April 95% of the jobs created were not paid employment, they fell in the self-employed category. When will the federal government acknowledge that our economy is failing to create jobs that allow working families to get ahead? When will they understand that when working people do well, business does well and we have a better country?".

The unemployment numbers - Statistics Canada's Labour Force Survey reports that, last month, May 2008, the unemployment remained the same as in April at 6.1%. The job market has been weak for college and university students looking for summer employment. Generally speaking, youth unemployment (24 years old or less) is growing. Last month, in seasonally-adjusted numbers, there were still 1,117,200 Canadians who wanted to work but did not have a job. That is 13,400 more people than in April.

Senior Economist Sylvain Schetagne's Analysis

- These statistics clearly show signs of slowdown, even when they appear to report growth in employment. The deterioration in the labour market seen in April continues: this time we see anemic job creation (8,400) concentrated in part-time employment (40,600) as 32,200 full-time jobs were lost in May 2008.

- The national unemployment rate is stable, but it conceals that a lot of people have dropped out from the active labour market in seven out of ten Canadian provinces and an increase in the unemployment rate in six out of ten Canadian provinces, including three out of four Western provinces.

- The manufacturing sector, despite a slight increase in May, still posts a net loss of 344,000 since November 2002 according to Statistics Canada, including 200,000 jobs in Ontario alone.

- Finally, the labour market for young workers continues the decline recorded in April. Among those aged 15-24, employment fell by 25,000 in May, and students aged 20 to 24 who were trying to enter the job market for the summer in May 2008 have found mainly part-time jobs. The unemployment rate for this group was 15.4% in May 2008, an increase of 3.2% compared to the same time last year, May 2007.

The Canadian Labour Congress, the national voice of the labour movement, represents 3.2 million Canadian workers. The CLC brings together Canada's national and international unions along with the provincial and territorial federations of labour and 130 district labour councils. Web site:

Contact Information

  • Canadian Labour Congress
    Jean Wolff
    613-526-7431 or cell 613-878-6040