Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Human Resources Development.
Last week, much to our surprise, the minister disputed the undeniable figures provided by Statistics Canada to the effect that, for 1996, just over 40 per cent of the unemployed were receiving UI. We can understand that this is shocking for the minister, but it is even more shocking for those who are unemployed and unable to draw benefits.
I therefore ask the minister again how he explains to the one and a half million people without jobs, to all those paying into the UI fund, that, when the Liberals came to power, 60 per cent of the unemployed received UI, while in 1996 this dropped to 41 per cent and, in the last six months, to 36 per cent. How does he explain this?