GATINEAU, QC, May 8, 2020 /CNW/ - The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, President of the Treasury Board and the Honourable Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance, today issued the following statement:
"Today's job numbers show that COVID-19 is having a real impact on communities and families right across the country. Since the beginning of this crisis, we have been focused on providing Canadians with the support they need as we work together to contain the spread of the virus and to keep Canadians safe.
That is why our government has taken unprecedented action to support Canadians and their families through this difficult time. We introduced the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy to help keep as many Canadians as possible working and connected to their employers. To help Canadians who have lost income due to COVID-19, we introduced the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), which provides $2,000 a month to those who need it most. Along the way, we have worked to ensure this benefit reaches even more Canadians and reflects the different realities they face. To date, over 7 million Canadians have accessed the CERB.
Canadians should be confident that we will do whatever we can to ensure that their jobs are safe as we continue to fight the global COVID-19 outbreak. That's why our government provided direct support to small businesses through the Canada Emergency Business Account and announced the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance to help them cover their rent.
These initiatives, along with increases to the Canada Child Benefit and the GST credit, are quickly putting more money into the pockets of families when they need it most, and helping to set our economy up to come back even stronger.
As provinces and territories begin to lift restrictions and our government continues to take steps towards economic recovery, we will be there for Canadians. We will get through these challenging times together."
Canada Emergency Response Benefit
The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) provides temporary income support to workers who have stopped working due to COVID-19. To help more Canadians benefit from the CERB, workers may earn up to $1,000 per month while collecting the benefit.
Individuals who are eligible for Employment Insurance regular or sickness benefits, or who have recently exhausted Employment Insurance regular or fishing benefits may also be eligible.
The CERB provides $500 per week for a maximum of 16 weeks, and is available from March 15, 2020, to October 3, 2020.
As of May 6, 2020, 7.72 million Canadians have accessed the CERB, and $28.82 billion in benefits have been paid out.
For information on eligibility and how to apply, visit www.canada.ca/coronavirus-CERB.
Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy
The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) supports employers that are hardest hit by the pandemic, and helps protect the jobs Canadians depend on.
The subsidy generally covers 75% of an employee's wages – up to $847 per week - for employers of all sizes and across all sectors who have suffered a drop in gross revenues of at least 15% in March, and 30% in April and May.
The program will be in place for a 12-week period, from March 15 to June 6, 2020.
Employers who are eligible for the CEWS are entitled to receive a 100% refund for certain employer contributions to Employment Insurance, the Canada Pension Plan, the Quebec Pension Plan, and the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan paid in respect of employees who are on leave with pay.
Since the CEWS launched last week, employers have applied for subsidies for over 1.7 million workers.
For more information on eligibility and how to apply, visit CRA's website.
Canada Emergency Business Account
To ensure that small businesses have access to the capital they need to see them through the current challenges, the Government of Canada launched the new Canada Emergency Business Account, which is delivered by eligible financial institutions in cooperation with Export Development Canada (EDC).
This program will provide interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs during a period where their revenues have been temporarily reduced due to the economic impacts of the COVID-19 virus.
This will better position them to quickly return to providing services to their communities and creating employment. Repaying the balance of the loan on or before December 31, 2022 will result in loan forgiveness of 25 percent (up to $10,000).
As of May 7, 564,000 applicants have been approved for CEBA for a total of $21.8 billion in cumulative funds disbursed. Additional applications are received daily.
For information on eligibility and how to apply, visit https://ceba-cuec.ca/.
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information: For media enquiries, please contact: Marielle Hossack, Press Secretary, Office of the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, 819-654-5552, [email protected]; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559, [email protected]