Moe finds silver lining in latest unemployment numbers

Grim numbers on the job front Friday as Stats Canada says almost 53-thousand jobs were lost last month in Saskatchewan as COVID-19 ravages our economy.
On a year-over-year basis, that number stands at 74-thousand.
While those numbers are like a cold slap in the face to many, Premier Scott Moe is finding some positives.
“Saskatchewan’s unemployment rate now stands at 11.3 percent. While that is high and quite concerning, it is also the second lowest unemployment rate in Canada.” Moe said during the government’s daily briefing on the COVID-19 pandemic. “The fact is Saskatchewan is weathering the storm better than many provinces.”
Moe says when you look at this and the success Saskatchewan is having in “flattening the curve” that we are walking a very thin line, but one we are navigating safely.
“The question is do you want to re-open the economy or do you want to control the spread of COVID-19?” Moe asked. “The fact is I want to do both, we all want to do both and together we will.”

Meanwhile, NDP leader Ryan Meili responded to the job loss numbers saying it’s unfortunate Saskatchewan families have to struggle to make ends meet during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meili says when this pandemic is over, there needs to be a change on how Saskatchewan’s economy operates in case something like this happens again.

“For too long, the Saskatchewan economy has been short-term, rip-and-ship, and these catastrophic events show how vulnerable that type of approach leaves us,” Meili said. “We look at hand sanitizer, health care supplies, even flour, how vulnerable we are when we’re so reliant on the rest of the world for the things we need.”

However, after Moe indicated federal funding is paying Saskatchewan people to not work, Meili said that’s a dangerous claim, and is frankly insulting.

“We see that the jobs just aren’t there, we know that Saskatchewan people are wanting to be on the job,” Meili said. “They want to be there safely, they want to be there if the jobs are there

“They’re anxiously wanting to work, and that work just isn’t there for them.”

Meili adds any notion of cutting supports at this time to encourage people to go back to work is “backwards.”

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