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Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board should return excess funds

CFIB is calling on the Yukon WCHSB to rebate a nearly $3 million surplus

Whitehorse, May 10, 2022 - The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is calling on the Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board (WCHSB) to rebate surplus funds back to small business owners. 

According to CFIB’s latest research snapshot, Workers’ Compensation and Surplus Distributions: A Small Business Perspective, the Yukon WCHSB is one of seven provincial and territorial boards in an over-funded position, meaning these boards have exceeded their desired funding target. 

The Yukon WCHSB was among the most over-funded: its assets were 132 per cent higher than its liabilities, while its targeted funding ratio is set at 129 per cent. If the Yukon WCHSB were to return all funds accumulated beyond the upper bound of their target ratio at the end of 2020, the total potential rebate to employers would be nearly $3 million. That is money back to employers who can effectively use the funds to help in their COVID-19 recovery efforts, and to reinvest in their business. For a Yukon business with five employees, the rebate would be about $644. 

“Obviously, workers compensation systems need to be adequately resourced to continue the important work of supporting workers and making workplaces safer. But when you have funds reaching levels that are millions of dollars above their upper targets, it’s time to return that money to hard-working small business owners.” said Kathleen Cook, CFIB director. 

Some Canadian jurisdictions have recently provided surplus distributions. This year, Ontario rebated $1.5 billion, while Manitoba rebated $95 million. In 2021, Prince Edward Island provided a $25 million rebate. CFIB is urging other provinces and territories to follow suit and deliver meaningful financial relief to small business owners.  

“The last two years have been devastating for small businesses across the country. Only 40 per cent are back to normal revenues, and two in three are still carrying covid-related debt,” said Brianna Solberg, CFIB, Senior Policy Analyst. “Getting excess WCHSB money back to small business owners in Yukon will not only provide some much-needed support, but also add some fairness back into the workers compensation system.” 

While seven boards across Canada have rebate policies, last year Ontario became the first province to legislate mandatory rebates when overfunding reaches a certain level. CFIB is also calling on provinces and territories to follow Ontario’s example to ensure certainty and consistency for small business owners.  
 

CFIB is calling on all governments to:  

  • Lower employer premiums or rebate surplus funds to employers, if funding ratio exceeds its target funding, with a stronger preference to rebate eligible employers  
  • Implement mandatory distribution policies where there are none  
  • Legislate surplus distribution policies, as in Ontario

Read the full snapshot here.  

For media enquiries or interviews, please contact: 
Kathleen Cook, CFIB Director 
431-388-2395 
[email protected]  

About CFIB 
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 95,000 members across every industry and region. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at cfib.ca

May 10, 2022

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