Ottawa to subsidize 75% of wages for all businesses
On Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gave details of this 75% wage subsidy announced on Friday, and the number of employees will not be a criterion for access to this assistance measure.
A business must have lost at least 30% of its income to be eligible for the grant. Ottawa will subsidize 75% of the first $ 58,700 of each salary. The federal government could thus insure up to $ 847 per week, per employee.
“The grant will apply to non-profit organizations, charities, as well as businesses of all sizes. The goal is that people can continue to receive a salary, regardless of whether they work for a company that employs 10 or 1000 people, “said the Prime Minister on his daily exit Monday morning.
“We haven’t changed our minds. We have clarified the details, “said Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, who was asked to explain why the measure was no longer reserved for SMEs as announced on Friday. “The economic impact of the coronavirus does not distinguish between large, small and medium-sized enterprises,” she said.
The Prime Minister has warned those who would like to take advantage of an emergency program.
“If there are companies or individuals who take advantage of this system, there will be severe consequences. We are in a moment when Canadians must be able to trust each other, ”he insisted.
Then, he invited companies that can afford it to pay the 25% of the salary that the federal subsidy does not cover.
The measure is retroactive to March 15.
Ottawa cannot yet say when the money will go to businesses. The Prime Minister advises employers to use the credit offered by his government to continue paying wages while waiting for the subsidy.
“I can now tell entrepreneurs, traders, business owners that this help is coming to them. So re-hire your employees, ”he pleaded.
Ottawa thus wants to ensure that the employment link is maintained for as many Canadians as possible.
However, the Prime Minister stressed that it is financial assistance to those who no longer have an income that is the priority of the government machine, at the moment. This is the Canadian Emergency Benefit (CHP).
Waiting for the online portal
The federal government recommends that Canadians who intend to apply for the ECP immediately open a file with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
“If you plan to apply for the Canadian Emergency Benefit, register with My CRA Account to ensure payment as soon as possible. If you are not registered, you can do so online NOW, ”Federal Labor Minister Filomena Tassi wrote on her Twitter account Monday morning.
Ottawa promised an online portal as early as April 6 to apply for ECPs. This benefit guarantees $ 2,000 per month, for four months, to everyone who has no income due to the pandemic. The federal authorities calculate that the money will be available within 10 days of a request. Registration with the CRA should speed up the process.
Soldiers ready if called
Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan said on Monday that he has a plan to deploy up to 24,000 members of the Canadian Armed Forces if necessary. This plan would also allow the military to provide assistance usually provided for floods or forest fires.
Some have already raised their hands. This is the case of the Long Point First Nation in Abitibi. She declared a state of emergency on Sunday and believes that the number of Sûreté du Québec agents available is “clearly insufficient” to guarantee the closure of her territory.
On Monday, Chief Steeve Mathias therefore sent letters to Prime Ministers Justin Trudeau and François Legault and asked for help from the RCMP or the military.
“We are in contact with several isolated communities, particularly aboriginal communities, and the chief of staff is developing plans for the first measures that we could take,” said Minister Sajjan.
“We take each request very seriously,” he added, after recalling that it was also possible to count first on the measures taken by the provinces.
First cases in a penitentiary
Two inmates from the maximum security institution at Port-Cartier were diagnosed with COVID-19.
This is what we learned in a press release issued by Correctional Service Canada, Monday afternoon.
“Before the two detainees were diagnosed, nine employees working in the same establishment were also found to be positive for COVID-19. They are all in solitary confinement at home, ”it was written.
The two sick detainees were isolated and “solitary confinement was imposed on the establishment as a precautionary measure”.
Since the start of the pandemic, prisoners’ rights advocates and unions of correctional officers have worried about the prison population, where the danger of contagion is particularly high.
Number of cases
There are now 7288 confirmed and probable cases in Canada, including 71 deaths.
Distribution of cases across the country, according to the most recent provincial reports available: 3,430 in Quebec, including 25 deaths; 1706 in Ontario, including 23 deaths; 884 in British Columbia, including 17 deaths; 661 in Alberta, including three deaths; 156 in Saskatchewan; 148 in Newfoundland and Labrador, including one death; 127 in Nova Scotia; 72 in Manitoba, including one death; 68 in New Brunswick; 18 in Prince Edward Island, including one death; four cases in the Yukon; only one case in the Northwest Territories. No cases have been reported in Nunavut.
To these reports must be added the 13 cases among passengers repatriated from the cruise ship Grand Princess on March 10.
Epidemiological data published by the Public Health Agency of Canada show that 63% of the cases are community transmissions that cannot be linked to a trip abroad.
Over 220,000 Canadians have been tested.