GATINEAU, QC, March 26, 2020 /CNW/ - Today, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development issued the following statement:
"COVID-19 has created unprecedented challenges across our country. Service Canada employees, along with many other public servants, have been working around the clock to deliver essential supports to Canadians during this difficult time. That work continues.
During a time when we are asking most Canadians to stay home, we need to make sure our service delivery model follows the best public health advice, while also meeting the needs of Canadians.
At this time, we will be closing in person Service Canada Centres. Let me be clear: Canadians will still be able to access their benefits. The best way to apply remains online at: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei.html.
Employees at Service Canada sites will turn their attention to serving Canadians over the phone. Our Citizen Service Officers will be providing personalized service support for EI and pensions applications, in addition to the services provided over the phone by our call centres. This will allow more Canadians to get the support they need, while better protecting both them and our staff.
We recognize that this might be a challenge for some Canadians who prefer to receive services in person. I want to assure Canadians that we are committed to ensuring they all have access to the supports they need and deserve. Service Canada Community Outreach and Liaison Service staff are contacting communities to offer alternate service delivery methods that will continue to support access to critical programs, services and benefits.
This is an evolving situation, and we will continue to make sure our response reflects the unprecedented challenges we face. Along with serving Canadians, health and safety is and will remain our top priority."
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information: For media enquiries, please contact: Jessica Eritou, Communications Assistant, Office of the Hon. Ahmed Hussen, P.C., M.P., Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, [email protected]; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559, [email protected]