Federal Government Announcements – Financial support for provinces and Canadians with disabilities
The Federal Government is prepared to commit $14 billion more to the provinces and territories to help them safely and carefully reopen their economies. This money would go to things like child care and personal protective equipment.
The Prime Minister also announced that Canadians with disabilities will receive a one-time, non-taxable payment of up to $600 to help offset the higher costs of living during the pandemic. The government is also establishing a national workplace accessibility stream to find and create jobs for those with disabilities, and is funding five projects to get supportive devices to overcome workplace barriers.
Many RMTs will be delaying their return to work for a variety of reasons. It could be that they have factors that put them at a higher risk from COVID-19, they may have members of their household who are at higher risk, or they may work in higher risk settings or with higher risk populations.
Those RMTs who are choosing not to return to work under these circumstances are likely to no longer qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).
The RMTAO has recently sent a letter to the Federal Government advocating that those who choose not to return to work due to increased risk for COVID-19 should still be able to access the CERB.
The Canadian Massage Therapist Alliance (CMTA), on which the RMTAO plays a leadership role, has also recently written to the Minister of Finance advocating for the general extension of the CERB beyond its initial 16 weeks for those who need it and still would qualify under the current criteria.