COVID-19 Assistance

Economic Measures

Many in our community are wondering how to pay the bills during the COVID-19 outbreak. The federal government has unveiled a number of economic measures to stabilize the economy during the COVID-19 outbreak. For further information, please visit the federal website for individuals (https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan/covid19-individuals.html),or for businesses (https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan/covid19-businesses.html). Further, please visit the provincial website for economic measures announced (https://www.alberta.ca/covid-19-supports-for-albertans.aspx)

Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)

  • Canadians who have suffered job loss are eligible to receive $2,000 monthly for four months.
  • This money will be deposited directly into bank accounts by the CRA.
  • This benefit covers Canadians who are sick with COVID-19, have lost their job, are quarantined, taking care of someone who is sick and working parents who have to stay home with their children.
  • An application website will be launched by the beginning of April.
  • It will take about 10 days for approved applicants to see the first deposit into their account.

 

Small Business Help

  • Small- and medium-sized businesses are eligible for a 75% wage subsidy backdated to March 15 (announced by the government on March 27).
  • Eligible businesses can receive this subsidy for up to three months.
  • A special emergency business account for small businesses has been established, allowing banks to offer $40,000 of government-guaranteed loans (interest-free for the first year). If certain conditions are met, the first $10,000 will be forgiven.
  • These loans are for businesses with payrolls of less than $1 million.
  • An additional $12.5 billion is dedicated to “operational cash flow requirements” and HST and GST payments are deferred until June 2020.

 

 

GST Credit

  • Adults currently receiving the GST credit will receive up to $300, and up to $150 per child.
  • We will update this page as more details become available.
  • It will be available in April 2020.

 

Enhanced Canada Child Benefit

  • The government is increasing the maximum annual CCB payment by $300 per child for the 2019-20 benefit year.
  • We will update this page as more details become available.
  • Parents will likely see this benefit in early May 2020.

 

Canada Student Loan Payments

  • This is a six-month interest-free moratorium on the repayment of Canada Student Loans.
  • We will update this page as more details become available.
  • It will be effective in early April 2020, after receiving Royal Assent.

 

Support for Indigenous Communities

  • A new distinctions-based Indigenous Community Support Fund to address immediate needs in First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation Communities.
  • We will update this page as more details become available.
  • This will be effective in April 2020.

 

Support for people experiencing homelessness (through Reaching Home)

  • Additional funding for the Reaching Home Initiative, for supplies like additional beds and physical barriers for social distancing, to continue to support people experiencing homelessness.
  • We will update this page as more details become available.
  • This will be effective in April 2020.

 

Support for women’s shelters and sexual assault centres, including on reserve

  • Supporting women and children fleeing violence to help shelters with their capacity to manage or prevent an outbreak in their facilities.
  • We will update this page as more details become available.
  • This will be effective in April 2020.

 

Lower Registered Retirement Income Fund Minimum Withdrawal Amounts

  • Reducing required minimum withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) by 25% for 2020.
  • This benefit is available immediately, with supporting legislation to follow.

 

Other supports:

  • Flexibility for individual and corporate taxpayers (tax payment deferral until September)
    • New individual tax filing deadline: June 1, 2020
    • Deferral of any income tax owing until August 2020.
  • Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) through BDC and EDC
    • Available immediately
  • Credit and liquidity support through financial Crown corporations 
    • Available through the Bank of Canada, OSFI, CMHC and commercial lenders (e.g., Domestic Stability Buffer, Insured Mortgage Purchase Program, Banker’s Acceptance Purchase Facility)

Important Information Regarding COVID-19

We have received many inquiries about COVID-19 and have compiled a list of FAQs on this page. We will update as the information changes.

What if I’m showing symptoms or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19?

I’m returning to Canada from abroad. What do I need to know?

I have travel planned in the coming days or weeks. Should I cancel or change my plans due to COVID-19?

I’m currently outside of Canada. Should I return home earlier than planned?

  • The Government of Canada is advising Canadians to:
    • Find out what commercial options are still available to return to Canada. Consider returning to Canada earlier than planned if these options are becoming more limited.
    • Ensure that you have significant finances and necessities, including medication, in case your travels are disrupted.
  • https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/advisories

I’m (or a family member) outside of Canada and impacted by travel bans. What can I do?

  • Canadians travelling outside of Canada in need of emergency consular assistance can contact Global Affairs Canada’s 24/7 Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa at 1-613-996-8885 or through email at sos@international.gc.ca.

Where can I get the most up-to-date information about COVID-19 and actions being taken to protect the health of Albertans?

I have a small business. How will COVID-19 impact me?

If I stay home from work, will I get EI support?

Is it okay to attend large gatherings?

What is going on with Alberta schools and daycares?

  • All public schools in the province are closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Schools authorities are expected to continue their regular day-to-day operations and ensure the safety of school facilities. Maintenance, capital projects, cleaning of facilities and administrative work will continue.
  • Every K-12 student will receive a final mark and students will progress to their next grade level next year. Provincial assessments, such as provincial achievement tests, will be cancelled. At this time, diploma exams essential for post-secondary acceptance will continue. Every student who is eligible to graduate from Grade 12 this year will graduate.
  • Teachers and other school staff will still be expected to work, either from home or at their workplace, to ensure these expectations are met. Decisions on how to do this are still to be made, and it may vary depending on the school jurisdiction.
  • Provincial Achievement tests have been cancelled for the remainder of the year.
  • All licensed child care, out-of-school care programs and preschool programs in Alberta are closed at this time. Approved day homes are exempt because they care for fewer than seven children at a time. These programs are encouraged to use enhanced sanitation practices.
  • Post-secondary institutions are also closed until further notice.
  • The government will work with post-secondary institutions to ensure that these extraordinary circumstances do not prevent students from being eligible for admission to post-secondary studies for the upcoming school year.
  • https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx

How do I prevent and prepare for COVID-19?