'Men in particular are taking a hit in ways Canada hasn't seen in a very long time.'
Ottawa (29 July 2009) - Last week the Bank of Canada declared the country’s recession to be virtually over with a largely upbeat view on the world economy. However, the bank tempered that enthusiasm by saying that it would be a long, drawn-out healing process with continued job losses.
Now, says a new report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), no one has been hit harder by this recession than working age men.
The report says that 71% of those who have lost their jobs during the recession to date are men. Canada's unemployment gender gap is wider now than at any time since Statistics Canada began collecting monthly gender unemployment statistics in 1976.
"This recession is hitting both men and women hard," says CCPA Senior Economist Armine Yalnizyan. "But men in particular are taking a hit in ways Canada hasn't seen in a very long time."
The report notes that this recession differs from those of the 1980s and 90s, which ushered in the 'freedom 55' era of golden handshakes for older workers. There were actually 78,000 more workers aged 55 and over in June than there were at the beginning of the recession, a 3% increase since October.
"Most of the workers deprived of their jobs in this recession (63%) are between the ages of 25 and 55," Yalnizyan says. "Workers under 25, who make up 15% of the labour market, account for more than one third (37%) of job reductions since October."
The report also notes that Ontario accounts for two-thirds (66.4%) of all jobs eliminated to date in this recession, driving the province's unemployment rate to its highest in 15 years.
"The recession is affecting Canadians from all walks of life and all parts of the country, but it could easily be portrayed as an Ontario-cession, an age-cession, and, above all, a he-cession," says Yalnizyan.
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