The report shows that the city experienced a decrease of 21 per cent in the number of people receiving regular EI benefits in that period. That puts Dawson Creek slightly above the middle of the pack compared to other Canadian cities – the steeping declines in EI claims were experienced in Greater Sudbury, Ont., and Wetaskiwin, Alta., with 48 and 45 per cent drops, respectively, while Val d’Or and Sept-Iles in Quebec saw significant increases in EI claims at 15 and 20 per cent, respectively.
Comparatively, Fort St. John saw a decrease in EI claims of 32 per cent, the steepest drop in the province. In British Columbia as a whole, the number of beneficiaries fell in all 25 large centres in the 12 months to June, and June marked the ninth consecutive month where the number of claims declined.
Overall, the country saw an 18 per cent decline in EI claims in that 12 month period, though the number of people receiving benefits was little changed from May to June at 577,400, following eight consecutive months of declines.
The number of people claiming regular EI benefits is not necessarily a reflection of the number of unemployed people in a particular jurisdiction, as there is always a certain proportion of unemployed people who do not qualify for benefits. The change in the number of regular EI beneficiaries reflects various situations, including people becoming beneficiaries, people going back to work, and people exhausting their regular benefits.
However, according to B.C. Stats, the jobless rate in the entire Northeast region in July was 4.4 percent, slightly up from the previous month at four per cent, but still the lowest regional rate in the province.