I am writing in response to Brian Zinchuk’s “Most effective social program is a job.” Having read his latest From the Top of The Pile column I have a pretty good idea what the pile refers to. I bet it stinks as much as this derogatory, offensive column on EI does.
If Mr. Zinchuk has an opinion to present on the current EI system then by all means he has the right to express that, my issue is with the way he expresses it. As a proud Newfoundlander I would like him to know that his use of the term “Newfie” and reference to “ the gang of Newfies” is highly offensive to me. To single out Newfoundlanders and then run them down using this term is an outrage. I also question the editors who allowed it to be published.
Mr. Zinchuk refers to the unfulfilled jobs in Western Canada and attracting Easterners to fill them. I think he should take his head out of the proverbial sand and look around. There are Newfoundlanders and Atlantic Canadians everywhere who have left their homes and moved out west and elsewhere for work, my wife and I included. It is not easy to leave your family and friends and move thousands of kilometres away. We made this move to Saskatchewan five years ago and only get to return home to see our families about once a year.
If this so called “gang of Newfies” all decided to head home and not return the premier would have to go much further than Ireland to try to fill all the unfulfilled jobs that would be left behind.
Furthermore, Mr. Zinchuk talks about his unproductive early 20s when he was caught in the “EI trap” and unmotivated to find work. I think he should take responsibility for this himself and not blame it on EI. Many people go through these periods in their lives, myself included. I would argue, as in my own case, that it had more to do with working a dead-end job that offered me lesser pay with few benefits or opportunity for advancement. I eventually went back to university and earned a degree while continuing to work these jobs. Regardless, I take full responsibility for any unproductive years in my life and not try to blame them on someone or something.
So if Mr. Zinchuk wishes to write more about EI reform he should go ahead, but next time not single out some of the hardest working, honest, and down to earth people in this country.