Today’s address reviewed existing supports, with a focus on support for Indigenous People. An additional $75M is being made available for organizations serving Indigenous People living in urban centres or off-reserve. The full announcement follows below.
Employers were also given a review of programs including the extended wage subsidy program. Employers and property owners are encouraged to visit Canada.ca and consult the COVID-19 page, which has an extensive overview of all the programs available to business owners.
The PM also recommended that people wear a non-medical face mask when they go out and physical distancing is not possible.
From the Q&A
Some countries have had an effective containing of the virus without a lockdown but with the effective advocating of wearing masks, eg Hong Kong. Canada continues to learn from the experience of other countries and modify policy accordingly.
When asked if the CERB was a disincentive for working and an opportunity open to fraud, the PM repeated the stance that the emphasis was on getting emergency aid out quickly to people who needed it. Fraud is unacceptable and those who defraud the system will be pursued.
Canada is working with the airlines to figure out how to fairly compensate Canadians for purchased tickets that cannot be used. Currently, many passengers are given vouchers that they may never be able to use. On the flip side, airline companies have lost 95% of their business. Finding a balance is critical.
As COVID-19 continues to affect Canadians across the country, First Nations, Inuit, and Métis are also facing health, social, and economic challenges. The Government of Canada recognizes that Indigenous peoples have unique needs, especially those who are separated from their families and communities.
On March 18, the Government of Canada announced $305 million for a new, distinctions-based Indigenous Community Support Fund to address immediate needs in Indigenous communities, and help them respond to COVID-19. The Fund included $15 million in support for Indigenous organizations that provide services to Indigenous peoples living in urban centres and off reserve.
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today announced $75 million in new funding for Indigenous organizations providing services to Indigenous peoples in urban centres and off reserve.
This additional funding will support more community-based projects that address the critical needs of Indigenous populations during this crisis, including food security, mental health support services, and sanitation and protective equipment. It could also help with other needs, such as support for Elders, transportation, and educational materials for Indigenous children and youth. Funding for projects will start rolling out in the coming weeks.