Today the federal Government announced more flexible rules for claiming the Canada emergency response benefit (the “CERB”), which previously excluded, for example, students and employees or self-employed people working reduced hours.
They also announced a wage boost for essential workers who make less than $2,500 a month, including those working in long-term care facilities for the elderly.
This applies to “a volunteer firefighter, or a contractor who can pick up some shifts, or you've got a part-time job in a grocery store”.
"We will do whatever we can to help you do your job and support you through this time."
Seasonal workers and those who have recently run out of employment insurance will now also be eligible for CERB.
People who make less than $1,000 a month due to reduced work hours will also qualify.
The CERB now has expanded eligibility criteria, and they will announce more relief soon about additional help for post-secondary students and businesses having trouble paying commercial rent.
The CERB is now focussing on the needs of seasonal workers, people who have exhausted EI benefits, students, owner-operators and those who continue to receive a modest income from part-time work, royalties and honorariums.
The changes are back-dated to March 15.