Ensuring a strong recovery that leaves no one behind

I want to thank everyone for following public health guidelines and staying resilient as a community in this challenging time. Your everyday sacrifices go a long way to help our frontline workers and will help us reach the other side of this pandemic sooner.

As Canadians brave the Omicron variant, our government will be there every step of the way to support families, workers, and businesses and ensure a strong recovery that leaves no one behind.

Supports for Families and Workers

From school closures to lost pay cheques, the pandemic required us to act decisively to support households and workers. The new Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit will provide $300 a week to employed or self-employed people unable to work due to public health lockdowns in their region.

For those who cannot work due to caring for children under 12 or family members who need supervised care can apply for the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit, which provides $500 a week.

Lastly, the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit will give $500 per one-week period for employed or self-employed individuals unable to work because they’re sick or self-isolating, or have underlying health conditions that make them vulnerable to infection.

Supports for Businesses

Restaurants, hospitality, and tourism-dependent businesses and the people who work for them are often the cornerstones of our communities. To help businesses rehire workers and raise their hours, the Canada Recovery Hiring Program will give wage subsidies up to 50 percent for employers facing revenue losses above 10 percent.

The Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program will provide wage and rent subsidies up to 75 percent for select tourism and hospitality businesses. For businesses, charities, and non-profits especially hurt by the pandemic, the Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program will offer wage and rent subsidies up to 50 percent.

If you have any questions about these programs, contact me at 416-283-1414 or Gary.Anand@parl.gc.ca.

Additional Rapid Tests

In addition to securing the next generation of vaccines and boosters, the federal government stands ready to support the testing capacity of each province and territory. In January, we delivered 140 million rapid antigen tests, roughly enough for one rapid test a week for every person. This is on top of the nearly 124 million rapid tests already delivered last December, of which 35,325,215 were shipped here to Ontario.

Rapid testing is an important tool in our COVID-19 response, enabling us to detect asymptomatic infections and reduce the risk of outbreaks. We will continue to ensure their delivery, as our provincial and territorial partners distribute them into the hands of Canadians.

First Nations Child and Family Services

In January, our government was pleased to announce an Agreement-in-Principle to make reparations to First Nations children and families harmed by years of discrimination and underinvestment in the child welfare system.

This agreement acknowledges that the child welfare system was originally geared towards removing Indigenous children from their families, cultures and languages, rather than supporting them in place. The settlement, totalling $31.5 billion, is the largest financial settlement in Canadian history. However, we know that no sum of money can replace the lives and childhoods destroyed, or the suffering of families.

This agreement will go a long way to reform Indigenous child and family services as we address historic injustices. This is a solemn reminder of our responsibility to continue walking the path of Truth and Reconciliation.