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Covid-19 Supports

For complete information about supports and programs provided by the Government of Canada see Canada's COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. See Information for Businesses and Workers for information about the supports provided by the Government of Saskatchewan.

Support for Individuals and Families

Many individuals and families are struggling financially because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Below is a summary of some assistance available to individuals and families generally. There are also supports for specific populations including people with disabilities, students, seniors and Indigenous peoples. Information about these supports can be found on both canada.ca and saskatchewan.ca.

Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB)

CRB will be available starting September 27, 2020 for a period of one year. It provides $500 per week before taxes for up to 38 weeks to eligible workers who are not eligible for Employment Insurance. It is for individuals who have stopped working due to Covid-19 or whose income have been reduced due to Covid-19.

Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)

CRCB will be available starting September 27, 2020 for a period of one year. It provides $500 per week before taxes for up to 38 weeks to eligible workers who have had to stop work or significantly reduce their hours to care for a family member for reasons related to Covid-19. Examples include people who need to care for their children because of school or daycare closures. Workers must not be eligible for other supports.

Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB)

CRSB will be available starting September 27, 2020 for a period of one year. It provides $500 per week before taxes for up to two weeks, for workers who are sick or must self-isolate for reasons related to COVID-19.

Employment Insurance (EI)

EI changes are being made as of September 27, 2020. These include higher minimum payments and reduced hours to qualify for EI. If you are eligible for EI benefits, you will receive a minimum taxable benefit at a rate of $500 per week in most cases.

Mortgage Payment Deferral

Homeowners facing financial hardship may be eligible for a mortgage payment deferral of up to six months. This is based on an agreement between the homeowner and the lender. Deferred payments still need to be paid at a later date with interest.

Public Health Emergency Leave

Employees are entitled to unpaid public health emergency leave from their job if they are required to isolate or they need to care for their child who is in isolation.

Special Vaccination Leave Introduced

As of March 18, 2021, The Saskatchewan Government amended the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 2020 to allow for paid time off from work for employees to get vaccinated for COVID-19, effective immediately. Special Vaccination Leave is similar to provisions allowing residents to vote during a general election. The special vaccination leave requires that during the pandemic:

  • Workers are entitled to three consecutive hours leave during work hours to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Workers are entitled to more than three consecutive hours if the employer determines the circumstances warrant a longer break from work.
  • Workers do not lose any pay or other benefits while taking time off to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.

Supports for Businesses

Many businesses are struggling financially because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Below is a summary of some of the assistance available to businesses generally. There are also supports for specific types of businesses including Indigenous businesses, tourism businesses and businesses in the oil and gas sectors. Information about these supports can be found on both canada.ca and saskatchewan.ca.

The Government of Saskatchewan has introduced The Supporting Saskatchewan Restaurants Act temporarily capping fees on food delivery charges to support restaurants in the province. Food delivery service providers can charge up to 18 per cent of the order price for services including delivery, and up to 10 per cent when restaurants use a third party ordering app but the restaurant fulfills the delivery or consumers choose a pickup option. This cap is effective until August 31, 2021.

Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)

BCAP provides guarantees to lenders to allow businesses to obtain loans to be able to stay in business despite the impact of Covid-19.

Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS)

Canadian businesses, non-profit organizations, or charities who have seen a drop in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic may be eligible for a subsidy up to 65% of eligible expenses.

The subsidy will provide payments directly to renters and property owners, without requiring the participation of landlords. Eligible applicants may also be eligible for additional support in the event of a lockdown.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

CEWS covers a portion of an employee's wages for employers impacted by Covid-19 allowing them to re-hire employees and avoid layoffs.

10% Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers

The 10% Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers (TWS) allows eligible employers to reduce the amount they need to remit the CRA for payroll deductions. The subsidy is for up to $1,375 for each eligible employee. The maximum total is $25,000 for each eligible employer.

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) is a separate program that provides a 75% wage subsidy to eligible employers. If eligible, you may be able to take advantage of both the TWS and the CEWS.

Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) interest-free loans

CEBA provides interest-free loans of up to $60,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs during a period where their revenues have been temporarily reduced. The deadline to apply to CEBA has passed. Those who have already applied for the initial $40,000 loan may still be eligible for a $20,000 extension. See the link for more details.

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PLEA gratefully acknowledges our primary core funder the Law Foundation of Saskatchewan for their continuing and generous support of our organization.