Statistics Canada determines census agglomeration used for EI region

Ryan Ross
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Beginning October 2014, Prince Edward Island will be divided into two EI regions — a capital region and a non-capital region.

Up until a few weeks ago many Islanders might not have heard of the term census agglomeration but for those getting employment insurance benefits it will soon become very important.

The federal government plans to use the Charlottetown census agglomeration as the basis for splitting P.E.I. into two regions in order to determine the number of hours needed to collect EI and how long recipients will be able to collect benefits.

How the province is being split has become a subject for debate with the Charlottetown census agglomeration making up one region and the rest of P.E.I. making up the other.

The idea is to give increased EI benefits to Islanders who live in higher unemployment areas outside of the Charlottetown census agglomeration.

Statistics Canada spokesman Peter Murphy said a census agglomeration is a type of geography that Statistics Canada uses to circulate its data.

It gives users one way of comparing data for areas of similar sizes, he said.

"In other words we produce these geographies for the purposes of statistical analysis."

There are several rules that define a census agglomeration, but they start with a core that has a population of at least 10,000 people.

In P.E.I.'s case, that means there are census agglomerations in the Charlottetown and Summerside areas.

The Charlottetown census agglomeration extends beyond the city's borders into neighbouring communities, but a look at a map shows the boundaries aren't uniform as they extend outward from the city.

One section juts northward with a swath of land between it and the census agglomeration falling outside of the boundaries.

Murphy said Statistics Canada uses place of work data as one way of determining if some communities fall within the census agglomeration.

If 50 per cent or more of the population in that community work in the core, then it is added to the agglomeration.

That's why a community like Mayfield, which is near the outer limit of the census agglomeration, is included, but a place like Hunter River, which is closer, falls outside the border.

"Place of work data is a good substitute or proxy for the strength of the relationship between an outlying or an adjacent municipality to the core," he said.

Murphy said reverse commuting, which involves people who live in the core working in another area, can also determine if a community is included in the census agglomeration.

"It's less common," he said.

Statistics Canada does a review of census agglomerations every five years and Murphy said communities can be added or removed. 

rross@theguardian.pe.ca

twitter.com/ryanrross

Organizations: Statistics Canada

Geographic location: Charlottetown, Hunter River

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Recent comments

  • Sitting at the Doc of the Bay --- Waiting for a Job To Come My Way.
    March 04, 2014 - 15:00

    Statistics Canada EI NL 16% - 420 Hrs -...30 wks Rural NL 5.6 % -700 Hrs ..14 weeks St John's NS 14.3 % - 420 Hrs 28 wks Rural NS 10.2 % - 525 Hrs 21 Wks Halifax PE 12% - 490 Hrs 23 Wks NB 6.7 % - 665 Hrs 23 wks Fredericton/ Moncton / St John.... NB 11.9 % - 490 Hrs 32 wks Madawaka NB 16.5 % - 420 Hrs 32 wks Restigouche

  • jimmie
    March 04, 2014 - 13:46

    So Pownal and Alexandra are rural but Blooming Point, Tracadie, Canoe Cove and Mayfield are urban. Riiiiight. Government of Canada has ZERO credibility. Next issue please!

  • Al
    March 04, 2014 - 13:38

    If you don't like the ei /welfare the way it is go where the jobs are,there is lots

  • PC GOVERMENT GOT TO GO..CANT TAKE IT ANY MORE.
    March 04, 2014 - 13:12

    For The Last 15 Years EI Been Taking Away Bit By Bit Every Year...We Were 70% Earnings One Time...And The Divisor Was 10 Weeks... Then Drop To 60% Then To 55% Then The Devisor Went To 14 Weeks.... Then They Dropping The Weeks You Get Plus Now More Hrs....They Just Won't Stop.... Look Just Because We Are in A Region With Low Employment ...Most Of The Jobs Are Poverty Jobs $10 to $13 Per Hr 32 Hrs A Week Average And over 50% of The Population make Up Those Jobs.... I Would Say Over 30% Are The Working Poor. I Don't Think That Anything is Going To Be Done...The Decisions Are Made Ottawa ....Ghiz is Just Watching What Sir... No Sir... Ok Sir..... To Ottawa.......No Backbone Here Just watch the Province Fall Apart.......Dam I Am Mad..... Let Me Take Over I Will Kick Some Butt.... Screaming !!!!!!!!!!!!! Lets Get a Few Thousands People And Start a Petition. Enough of Talking !

    • Garth Staples
      March 04, 2014 - 13:48

      And most of the EI changes my friend were made by LIBERALS Chretien and Martin. Get your fact correct. I was a former employer and I know.

  • townie22
    March 04, 2014 - 12:13

    if this is based on a core of 10,000 why doesn't it include Summerside? this has absolutely nothing to do with PnP, a Provincial issue, this is about EI, a Federal issue.

    • Garth Staples
      March 04, 2014 - 13:51

      There are more factors than just core pops.

    • townie22
      March 04, 2014 - 18:50

      not according to the StatsCan report, oh, you mean Min. Shea's manipulations in an attempt to get re-elected? i get you now, you're right.

  • Politicians like it messy
    March 04, 2014 - 11:52

    It would make more sense to have different, occupation and industry based, EI requirements to qualify for the benefit. Labourers in seasonal industries would qualify sooner than those employed in other industries or even skilled workers in the same industry. That would provide help where that help is needed without creating this artificial divide in the place where wild life roams the centre of the so called Capital and you cannot get more than 2 hours away from it without getting your feet wet.

  • Islander
    March 03, 2014 - 23:39

    In my opinion WHAT A LOAD OF BULL you could spread it an inch thick.

    • Charlie
      March 04, 2014 - 09:53

      I have to agree! I have never, never, seen such a stupid process in my life! It's like playing "Pin the Tail on the Donkey". One person on one side of the road treated differently from the other. I thought there was some sanity in the workings of Federal or Provincial Governemnt workings, but lately, I have to say that I am wrong!

  • John W. A. Curtis
    March 03, 2014 - 22:09

    Gail Shea pulled the rug from under Charlottetown. Some rural areas should be excluded from Charlottetown, however I support two Employment Insurance zones. The Liberals ramped upped the PNP and there should be more Islanders working and fewer on EI. The Liberals tainted P.E.I. by allowing lawyers and agents to profit from the PNP. Now the Ghiz government has to work harder to undo the damage to P.E.I.'S reputation while Gail Shea addressed Charlottetown misusing the EI system