On September 23, the second session of the 43rd Parliament opened with the traditional Throne Speech, which provided an overview of the Government’s plan for moving through the Covid-19 pandemic and boosting the economy for long-term recovery.

Here are highlights of the various measures announced:

Support for Individuals

Although the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) will expire as previously announced on October 3, the Government announced that those who received the CERB would be supported by the Employment Insurance (EI) System. In addition, for those individuals who do not qualify for EI, the Government will create a transitional Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB).

These new benefits would provide income support to Canadians while promoting economic recovery by introducing measures that encourage people to return to work safely. Specifically, the legislation includes:

  • A Canada Recovery Benefit of $500 per week for up to 26 weeks for self-employed workers who are not eligible for EI and still require income support. The CRB would support Canadians who have not returned to work due to COVID-19 or whose income has dropped by at least 50%. These workers must be available and looking for work, and must accept work where it is reasonable to do so;
  • A Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) of $500 per week for up to two weeks for sick workers or those who must self-isolate for reasons related to COVID-19. The CRSB supports our commitment to ensure all Canadian workers have access to paid sick leave; and,
  • A Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) of $500 per week for up to 26 weeks per household, for eligible Canadians unable to work, because they must care for a child under the age of 12 or a family member because schools, day-cares or care facilities are closed due to COVID-19 or because the child or family member is sick and/or required to quarantine.

Support for Businesses

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) will be extended through to summer 2021 as part of the Government’s plan to help create over one million jobs.

In addition, the Government will be expanding the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) program to help businesses with their fixed costs, work to improve the Business Credit Availability Program and introduce further support for industries that have been the hardest hit by the pandemic, including travel and tourism, hospitality, and cultural industries like the performing arts.

Additional Measures

  • Increasing the Old Age Security amount once a senior turns 75 and boosting the CPP survivor’s benefit;
  • Creating a new Canadian Disability Benefit modeled after the Guaranteed Income Supplement for seniors;
  • Accelerating steps to achieve a national, universal Pharmacare program;
  • Build a national child-care program.

For more information on financial support details, contact your McCay Duff advisor.

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