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Federal and Ontario Provincial COVID-19 Relief Measures

This page contains information about financial and various supports that may apply to students as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last updated: April 23, 2020

What is it? 

The federal government launched an online tool to help Canadians navigate the various financial benefits available during the pandemic.

Link for more information:

https://covid-benefits.alpha.canada.ca/en/start

What is it?

The benefit would provide $1,250 every 4 weeks for up to 16 weeks starting May 2020. If a student is taking care of someone else, or has a disability, the benefit amount increases to $1,750 every 4 weeks.

Who is this for?

Eligible high school graduates, post-secondary students, including those set to begin their studies and recent post-secondary graduates, can apply for the CERB. For graduates to be eligible, they must have completed their studies from December 2019 onward.

Link to apply and/or more information:

https://pm.gc.ca/en/news/news-releases/2020/04/22/support-students-and-new-grads-affected-covid-19

What is it?

For students who choose to do national service and serve their communities, the new Canada Student Service Grant will provide up to $5,000 for their education in the fall.

Who is this for?

Students who choose to do national service and serve their communities during the COVID‑19 pandemic.

Link to apply and/or more information:

https://pm.gc.ca/en/news/news-releases/2020/04/22/support-students-and-new-grads-affected-covid-19

What is it?

Expanding skills development and youth programming measures to create up to 116,000 jobs, placements and other employment opportunities for students. Some of these opportunities will be focused on frontline sectors including health, agriculture, food processing, transportation and retail.

Who is this for?

Those who qualify for the Canada Summer Jobs program (i.e. work placements, youth employment and student/youth volunteers). 

Link to apply and/or more information:

https://pm.gc.ca/en/news/news-releases/2020/04/22/support-students-and-new-grads-affected-covid-19

What is it?

A 6-month moratorium on all Canada Student Loan payments effective March 30, 2020. Pre-authorized debits will be stopped.

No interest will accrue on student loans.

Who is this for?

All current Canada Student Loan borrowers.

Link to more information:

There is no need to apply.

https://www.csnpe-nslsc.canada.ca/en/what-is-new

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/04/support-for-students-and-recent-graduates-impacted-by-covid-19.html

What is it?

The benefit would provide $2,000 a month for up to four months for workers who lose their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Who is this for?

Workers who lost their job due to COVID19 and do not have access other income support. Workers who are sick, quarantined or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19. Working parents who must stay home without pay to care for children that are sick or need additional care because of school and daycare closures. Workers who still have their employment but are not being paid because there is currently not sufficient work and their employer has asked them not to come to work. Wage earners, as well as contract workers and self-employed individuals who would not otherwise be eligible for Employment Insurance.

Link to apply and more information:

https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/cerb-application.html

What is it?

Canadians who have lost their jobs as the result of COVID-19 and have applied for EI will automatically be eligible for the new CERB.

The EI sickness benefits provide up to 15 weeks income replacement and is available to eligible claimants who are unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine, to allow them time to restore their health and return to work.

Canadians quarantined can apply for Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits.

Who is this for?

Anyone who currently qualifies for EI (e.g. who recently lost their employment or have reduced hours).

Link to apply and more information:

https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-sickness.html

 

What is it?

For eligible businesses and non-profit organizations, the government will cover up to 75% of a salary on the first $58,700, for a period of 12 weeks, from March 15 to June 6, 2020.

Who is this for?

Businesses and non-profit organizations that experienced a drop of at least 30% in revenue due to COVID-19.

Link to apply and more information:

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan/wage-subsidy.html

What is it?

Effective March 15, 2020 to March 14, 2021, the Government of Canada introduced temporary special measures to support employers and workers affected by COVID-19:

  • Extension of the maximum possible duration of an agreement from 38 weeks to 76 weeks.
  • Mandatory cooling off period has been waived for employers who have already used the WS program so that eligible employers may immediately enter into a new agreement.
  • Reduced the requirement that businesses must be in business, from 2 years to 1 year.
  • Eliminated the burden of having to provide sales/production figures at the same time.

Who is this for?

WS is a program that helps employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary decrease in business activity beyond the control of the employer.

To participate, employers must show a reduction of hours of at least 10%, to a maximum of 60%.

Link to apply and more information:

https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/corporate/notices/coronavirus.html#h4.01

What is it?

The government will provide an extra $300 per child to recipients of the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) for 2019-2020.

Who is this for?

Available to anyone who already receives or are eligible to receive the CCB.

Link to apply and more information:

Individuals who already receive the CCB do not need to re-apply. The benefit is automatic, and the method of receipt will not change.

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html#increasing_canada_child_benefit.

What is it?

Eligible parents will receive a one-time per child payment of:

  • $200 for children aged 0 to 12
  • $250 for children or youth aged 0 to 21 with special needs

This funding can help parents with the costs of work books, educational apps, educational subscription services, movies and other tools to support learning at home.

Parents refers to parents, guardians, and caregivers.

Who is this for?

There is no income cap on this program. All parents are eligible if you have a child who is:

  • aged 0 to 12
  • aged 0 to 21 with special needs

If you have more than one child, you must submit one application per child.

Before you apply, please note:

  • only one parent can apply for each child
  • the parent who applies should have custody of the child

Link to apply and more information:

https://www.ontario.ca/page/get-support-families#section-0

What is it?

This is a one-time top-up payment. It will be distributed in early May 2020, as part of the regular scheduled GST Credit payment. The one-time GST credit begins phasing out at 5 cents for every dollar of family income earned over $37,789, based on the 2018 tax year. For example, a couple with no children would have no entitlement if their 2018 family income exceeded $49,389.  

Who is this for?

Anyone who already receives the GSTC.

Link to apply and more information:

There is no need to apply for this payment. If you are eligible, you will get it automatically.

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan/covid19-individuals.html#increased_goods_services_tax_credit

What is it?

$7.5 million in funding to Kids Help Phone to provide young people with the mental health support they need during this difficult time.

Who is this for?

Young people who need mental health support.

Link to apply and more information:

There is no need to apply. https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html#mental_health_support

https://kidshelpphone.ca/

What is it?

$305 million for a new distinctions-based ICSF to address immediate needs in First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nation communities.

Who is this for?

  • First Nations communities (including self-governing and modern treaty nations)
  • Inuit communities in Inuit Nunangat
  • Métis governing members in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario
  • Regional, urban and off-reserve Indigenous organizations including Friendship Centres, Métis Settlements General Council of Alberta and Métis in the Northwest territories

 

Link for more information:

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan/covid19-individuals.html#indigenous_community_support_fund

What is it?

To help battle the COVID-19 outbreak, starting immediately, the government will remove the restriction that allows international students to work a maximum of 20 hours per week while classes are in session, provided they are working in an essential service or function, such as health care, critical infrastructure, or the supply of food or other critical goods.

During the COVID-19 outbreak, workers in certain roles and industries have been under considerable pressure, and the government recognizes that international students who are already present in Canada will help meet the challenges of the pandemic. For instance, thousands of international students are studying in health- and emergency service-related programs, including many who are nearly fully trained and ready to graduate. This temporary rule change provides health-care facilities with access to additional well-trained workers at a time when they are badly needed.

Link for more information:

https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/news/2020/04/removing-barriers-for-international-students-working-in-essential-services-to-fight-covid-19.html