Canadian government to extend COVID-19 emergency benefits, Trudeau announces | FULL
CA, 20 Feb 2021
The Canadian government is extending many of its emergency COVID-19 benefits as the pandemic rages on, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Friday.
The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) and the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit will be extended by 12 weeks. Meanwhile, another two weeks will be added to the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit.
The government is also increasing Employment Insurance (EI) availability to 50 weeks in total, meaning an additional 24 weeks can be claimed.
“No one should be going to work sick right now. It’s that simple,” the prime minister said.
The prime minister’s warning comes on the heels of grim warnings from federal public health officials that Canada’s recent decline in COVID-19 cases is under threat from new variants.
Canadian ministers spoke following Trudeau, giving more information on the announcement as well as taking questions.
Health Minister Patty Hajdu addressed questions on whether Pfizer had reached out to them about the possibility its vaccine can be stored at higher temperatures, which would make it easier for the product to get to remote and low-income regions. She said while they have not sought approval yet, they are in discussions the company about the topic and will be ready should they seek approval from Health Canada.
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