Submitted by Catherine McKenna, MP for Ottawa Centre
As we head into the summer months, the majority of Canadians have gotten at least one shot. This is great news, but we must continue to stay safe and follow public health guidelines. I know it’s been tough, but we can do this!
A huge thank-you to all the nurses, PSWs and health-care workers, including in Ottawa Centre, who have made so many sacrifices to keep us and our loved ones safe. We all need to do our part. When you’re eligible to get vaccinated, do it with the first vaccine offered.
On April 19, the federal government released Budget 2021. The budget outlines a plan that will help us conquer COVID-19, punch our way out of the COVID-19 recession, and build a more resilient Canada that is more fair, prosperous and innovative.
This means support for small businesses by extending CEWS, CERS and lockdown support, and the creation of the Canada Recovery Hiring Program to subsidize employers so they can hire more people or increase their employees’ hours. This also means working to build an affordable early learning and childcare system at an average of $10/day. This is not only good for families — this is good for all Canadians, as it means more women entering the workforce. Lastly, the federal government is making investments in sustainable infrastructure including natural infrastructure, retrofits and strengthening climate resiliency.
In local news, I have a few exciting updates, starting with Canada Summer Jobs! To all the youth ages 15-30, Canada Summer Jobs are now posted on jobbank.gc.ca/youth There are thousands of jobs available, right here in Ottawa. Please reach out to my office if you have questions.
Recently, I’ve made a few significant local announcements. This includes federal funding of $900,000 to renovate the Bronson Centre, which serves over 20,000 residents and is a hub for not-for-profit organizations that serve vulnerable people. The government understands the vital role community centres play in the health of our community by providing critical services/activities, fostering social inclusion and improving the quality of life. Federal investments to upgrade 29 playgrounds across Ottawa that are beloved by kids and parents were also made.
Our government is investing $8.9 million in federal funding through the COVID-19 Resilience Stream in Ottawa for projects that will ensure residents have access to safe and inclusive community spaces. This includes renovating Cornerstone Housing for Women shelters with improved air quality and a more comfortable and safer environment, so that they can continue to provide critical services to our most vulnerable women and gender-diverse residents.
Lastly, the federal government is investing $74,000 for the Plant Pool Recreation Association, through our Healthy Communities Initiative. This will fund the Shade Sails Seniors’ COVID-19 Compliant Park Programming project which provides a great way for seniors to get out, gather under the shade, meet new people and take part in safe games. Many Ottawa seniors spent the last thirteen months isolated from their friends and family, which is why this is so important.
We’ve had a challenging year and please know that it’s OK to not be OK. There are people in Ottawa ready to help, such as the 24/7 Distress Line at 613-238-2211 or text at 343-306-5550. We will get through this, Ottawa Centre!
A reminder that my constituency office continues to be open virtually. Call us at 613-946-8682 or email email@example.com.