Federal Update: New COVID-19 community programs and a CERB extension

Submitted by Catherine McKenna, MP Ottawa Centre

Dear neighbours,

I want to start off by expressing my deep sadness for the loss of lives, injuries and the devastation that resulted from the explosion in Beirut. I know that we are all thinking about the people of Lebanon and the Lebanese community in Ottawa Centre. Our government continues to aid in the reconstruction and humanitarian needs. If you can, we encourage Canadians to donate to the Humanitarian Coalition or one of its partners. Donations will be matched by the Government of Canada. Visit HumanitarianCoalition.ca for more information.

In Ottawa, COVID-19 cases are steady, and it’s critical that we continue to follow public health guidelines to keep ourselves and others safe. COVID-19 will be here for the foreseeable future. We need to adapt and work together, especially with back-to-school. Together, by doing our part, we can minimize future outbreaks, and keep our loved ones safe and healthy.

This month, I was pleased to announce the Canada Healthy Communities Initiative. I’ve seen so much innovation in Ottawa to adapt to COVID-19, from opening streets to pedestrians, to community gardens, to apps allowing markets to have curbside delivery. These are the innovative ideas that will get us through this pandemic, while building a stronger, more resilient Ottawa. I encourage all local community groups, not-for-profits and community associations to apply! 

Another new program I announced this month is the COVID-19 Resilience Funding Stream. Now, more than ever, Canadian communities need our help. The new program will make it easier to support Canadian communities by protecting their health, improving their quality of life and creating good jobs. Through the COVID-19 Resilience Stream, projects will be eligible for a significantly larger federal cost share — up to 80 per cent for provinces, municipalities and not-for-profit organizations, and raising it to 100 per cent for territorial and Indigenous projects designated under the new stream.

Lastly, as many of you know, there was an incident involving abusive behaviour at my constituency office a few weeks ago. This is the kind of behaviour that discourages women from entering politics, and I am committed to working across party lines to make it stop. I want to thank so many of you for your kind and thoughtful messages and constant support. It really means a lot to my staff and me. 

Other federal government updates:

CEWS extension and Period 5 applications open

To assist even more hard-working Canadians, our government extended the program until Nov.  21. The expanded eligibility will qualify a larger range of organizations, a new sliding revenue-decline test to determine the subsidy amount and a top-up subsidy of up to 25 per cent for the most impacted employers.

The CERB extended for another four weeks

Our government is extending the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) for another four weeks, introducing new benefits and creating flexibility in programs so we can continue to offer Canadians and their families the support they need. 

Find more information on both programs and others at www.canada.ca/coronavirus  

Thank you and stay strong, Ottawa Centre! 


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