Federal Update: Doing our part to limit a resurgence of COVID-19 and protect our community

Submitted by Catherine McKenna, MP Ottawa Centre

Dear friends, 

Thanks to our collective hard work and respect for public health instructions, our community has made it to Stage 3 of re-opening!

While this is certainly a welcome development, it brings a heightened need to be mindful of our actions. COVID-19 is still here, and we must continue working to reduce transmission. 

Ottawa Public Health advises that ignoring the need to be vigilant can quickly lead to a resurgence of cases. They recommend that before choosing to take part in activities, ask yourself: “What is my level of risk with this activity? Can I do this safely? Is there a safer alternative?”

If we all keep doing our part, we can limit a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in Ottawa.

As per federal assistance, here are some major updates:

The Safe Restart Agreement: Ontario will be receiving over $5 billion in federal dollars through the Safe Restart Agreement. This includes $2 billion in federal funding for municipal operations and $1.8 billion in transit funding, $1 billion of which is coming to Ontario.

More funding for childcare: The federal government is acting to support families as we begin to safely restart our economy by investing $625 million in emergency federal support to ensure that safe, sufficient and affordable childcare is available.

Canada Wage Subsidy extension: The federal government is proposing changes to the wage subsidy that would extend it until Dec. 19 and expand it to help even more business owners and employees across the country. 

Increase in GIS Benefits: This month, new higher GIS earnings exemptions will increase benefits for over 300,000 low-income seniors.

Increase in Canada Child Benefit: The Canada Child Benefit has increased once again for Canadian families. This tax-free benefit helps with the cost of living. Check out the family and child benefits calculator to help with budgeting.

Here are some great things that have been happening locally, here in Ottawa:

I’m so pleased to have announced funding to CENTRE 507, under the Local Food Infrastructure Fund. This funding will help this vital Ottawa Centre organization to continue to provide hot meals to those in need.

It was also great to hear that the Ottawa Boys and Girls Club is welcoming members back into the club for Summer Day Camps! Call or visit your clubhouse for information on registration.

Earlier this month, I had a great time chatting with Jennifer Stewart and Catherine Clark on The Honest Talk about the challenges, and the opportunities, of being a mom and a politician, and the importance of creating a better environment for women in politics.

Those are quite a few updates, but let’s get back to the main points; Ottawa Public Health is still recommending that everyone continue physical distancing, on top of wearing a mask inside of all closed spaces, which is now mandatory. Remember, carefully go about socializing. 

It takes a community to beat a virus. All our actions add up to protect everyone in our city. Keep doing your part to protect your friends, family and neighbours.

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