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Ottawa planning new ‘lockdown benefit’ to provide income during public-health shutdowns

October 21, 2021
By Talent Canada Staff

The federal government is planning a new “lockdown benefit” to provide income to Canadians who can’t work because of government-imposed public health lockdowns.

“Canada is still fighting the fourth wave of this pandemic and it is particularly virulent in some parts of the country,” it said in a press release.

“The Government of Canada wants to ensure that if another level of government takes a decision to impose a temporary lockdown to save lives and stop the spread, they can do so with full confidence that individuals will get the income support they need.”

It announced plans to introduce legislation for the new Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit, which would provide income support to workers whose employment is interrupted by specific government-imposed public health lockdown scenarios and who are unable to work due to such restrictions.


What the benefit offers

The new benefit would be:

  • $300 a week.
  • Strictly available to workers whose work interruption is a direct result of a government-imposed public health lockdown.
  • Available until May 7, 2022, with retroactive application to October 24, 2021 should the situation warrant it.
  • Accessible for the entire duration of a government-imposed public health lockdown (up until May 7, 2022).
  • Available to workers who are ineligible for Employment Insurance (EI) and those who are eligible for EI, as long as they are not paid benefits through EI for the same period.

Individuals whose loss of income or employment is due to their refusal to adhere to a vaccine mandate would not be able to access the benefit.

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