Canadian Pizza Magazine

Restaurants Canada urges reduction in EI premiums for small businesses

By Canadian Pizza   

News Business and Operations Staffing

Restaurants Canada, together with the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and the Tourism Industry Association of Canada, is urging the federal government to lower the employment insurance premium rate to 1.58 per cent for small businesses and their employees from the current rate of 1.66 per cent.

The request is based on the findings of a report titled “On the Precipice – Help is Needed“ authored by Ian Lee, PhD, associate professor at Carleton University. The report delves into the impacts of employment insurance premiums on small businesses.

As restaurants and small business owners navigate an affordability crisis, this report shines a spotlight on the challenges posed by higher EI Premiums amid cost pressures. It issues a call to action to the federal government to address the escalating costs of running a small business in today’s challenging economic climate. Bankruptcies among restaurants and accommodations, construction and retail doubled from 2019 to 2024, Restaurants Canada said in a news release.

“Restaurant operators, representing a $114 billion dollar industry, as the fourth largest private employer, affirmed their commitment to reinvesting government-provided payroll tax relief into their businesses and workforce. This reinvestment would immediately take the form of improved wages, investments in training and development, or expanded hiring efforts,” said Kelly Higginson, president and CEO of Restaurants Canada, in the release. “The foodservice industry is a powerhouse employer for Canadian communities and has demonstrated remarkable resilience. The livelihoods of countless employees, especially youth and newcomers, depend on the success of these establishments.”


Visit the campaign landing page.

Download the full report.

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