The government of Canada announced some new benefits and supports for workers affected by COVID-19 listed below. If you have questions about your rights as a worker during the COVID-19 Crisis, contact the Worker's Action Centre. For a guide on what to apply for depending on you situation, check out this detailed guide compiled and published freely by Dr. Jennifer Robson, Associate Professor of Political Management at Carleton University.
Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
Applications for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit are now open. Here are some important updates to know about CERB:
- CERB replaced the previously-announced Emergency Care Benefit and the Emergency Support Benefit.
- As of April 6, there is ONE application for both Employment Insurance (EI) Sickness Benefits and the CERB. If you applied for EI or Sickness Benefits AFTER March 15, your claim will automatically be processed as the CERB.
- CERB's application process is very simple and based on people answering questions honestly. In order to get this support into the hands of people who need it quickly, all applications will be approved initially and then checked for eligibility later.
- Service Canada Offices are now closed. If you cannot apply for CERB online, you can apply over the phone: 1-800-622-6232
- As of April 15, 2020 CERB has been expanded to include Canadians who earn $1,000 a month or less.
- People on social assistance whose jobs were impacted by COVID-19 are eligible keep part of the CERB.
Employment Insurance (EI) Caregiver Benefit
If you are caring for someone who is critically ill, you may be eligible for EI Caregiver Benefits. For more information on the EI Caregiver Benefit and to apply, click here.