March 30, 2020
TO ALL IBEW FIRST DISTRICT LOCAL UNIONS
On Friday, March 27, 2020 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced further government measures of support for businesses and workers in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Phase one of the federal governments relief plan to battle devastating impact of COVID-19 was announced March 18th . Friday’s announcement is part of government’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, which already commits $107 billion in support to Canadians.
To further support small businesses, the Government of Canada on Friday announced it will:
- Provide a 75 per cent wage subsidy for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020. This will help businesses to keep and return workers to the payroll. More details on eligibility criteria will start with the impact of COVID-19 on sales and will be shared before the end of the month.
- Allow businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer all Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST) payments until June, as well as customs duties owed for imports. This measure is the equivalent of providing up to $30 billion in interest- free loans to Canadian businesses. It will help businesses so they can continue to pay their employees and their bills and help ease cash-flow challenges across the country.Further details of the 75 per cent wage subsidy were released earlier today. Below are some of the details from today’s announcement:
- Businesses, which includes non-profits and charities, whose revenue has decreased by 30% since COVID-19 will qualify for the 75 per cent wage subsidy
- There is no minimum or maximum number of employees a business must have
- This wage subsidy is backdated to March 15, 2020
- It will apply to the first $58,700 in income per employee (max $847 per week, per employee)
- Employers are encouraged to top up employees remaining 25% of wages if the business can afford to do so
- Employers were also encouraged to “do the right thing” and only apply if they meet the requirements and need the financial assistance to keep workers. Employers were sternly warned “NOT to game the system” as there will be serious consequences to those that do.
Please review the federal governments resource page dedicated to all things related to COVID-19 including Employment Insurance information, other support for workers, supports for business and more information on these and other measures HERE.
You can stay up to date on COVID-19 information on the IBEW Canada website on our COVID- 19 page.
Stay safe and stay healthy.
International Vice President
cc: International Representatives IBEW,
System Council #11