Income Support Payment (Number of Weeks) Regulations: SOR/2020-142
Canada Gazette, Part II, Volume 154, Number 14
SOR/2020-142 June 26, 2020
CANADA EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT ACT
The Minister of Employment and Social Development, with the consent of the Minister of Finance, pursuant to subsection 8(2) of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit Act footnote a, makes the annexed Income Support Payment (Number of Weeks) Regulations.
Gatineau, June 26, 2020
Minister of Employment and Social Development
Income Support Payment (Number of Weeks) Regulations
Maximum Number of Weeks
1 For the purpose of subsection 8(1) of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit Act, the maximum number of weeks for which income support payments may be made to a worker is 24 weeks.
Coming into Force
2 These Regulations come into force on the day on which they are registered.
REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT
(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)
Parliament has enacted the Canada Emergency Response Benefit Act (the Act) to authorize the making of income support payments to workers who cease working for reasons related to the COVID-19 coronavirus disease. As provided in the Act, the amount of the income support payment is to be fixed in regulation by the Minister of Employment and Social Development, with the consent of the Minister of Finance.
The COVID-19 acute respiratory disease is a condition in which affected individuals develop fever, cough and/or difficulty breathing. COVID-19 has clearly demonstrated that it can cause severe, life-threatening respiratory disease. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and death.
As a result of quarantine and directed self-isolation measures which have been put in place across Canada to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19, Canadians have been urged to remain in their homes and many workplaces have closed temporarily. This has led to many Canadians being unable to work during this period. Many Canadians do not receive Employment Insurance or other income during this time, which may cause serious financial hardship.
The Act establishes an income support payment for eligible workers who cease working for reasons related to COVID-19 that is paid in four-week instalments for up to a total of 16 weeks. As measures are taken to gradually reopen the economy, it is expected that people will return to work. However, some workers may be providing care to children or family members due to COVID-19; may be sick or in quarantine or self-isolation; or may not be able to return to work if the workplace conditions are not safe. As the first 16 weeks of the emergency benefit will end on July 4, 2020, many workers may still not be able to return to work, depending on their personal circumstances, and may continue to require income support.
The maximum number of weeks of the income support payments may be fixed in regulations by the Minister, with the consent of the Minister of Finance, as per subsection 8(2) of the Act.
The objective of this regulation is to fix the total number of weeks of the income support payments at 24 weeks under the Act.
As per subsection 8(2) of the Act, this regulation is being put in place by the Minister of Employment and Social Development, with the consent of the Minister of Finance, fixing the total number of weeks of the income support payments at 24 weeks.
This regulation will allow the income support payment to be made to individuals who cease working due to reasons related to COVID-19 and meet other eligibility requirements for up to an additional 8 weeks over the previous total of 16 weeks.
The regulation comes into force upon registration.
This amendment is directly in response to the immediate and extraordinary public health situation posed by the outbreak of COVID-19, and to provide additional assistance to workers who may need additional weeks of income support as the economy gradually reopens. These measures need to be in place expeditiously to be effective. Consequently, no prepublication was undertaken.
The maximum number of weeks may be amended by regulation. There is no discretion in choice of instrument.
Modern treaty obligations and Indigenous engagement and consultation
There are no implications for modern treaty obligations or Indigenous engagement in these regulations.
Benefits and costs
The Canada Emergency Response Benefit is part of the Government’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, which provides direct support to Canadian workers and businesses to help meet the cash needs of Canadian businesses and households, and to help stabilize the economy. These measures will also help ensure that individuals are able to remain at home as directed, and return to work as circumstances allow, thus reducing the risk of further spread of the disease.
Small business lens
No small business impacts are expected to result from these amendments.
These amendments have no impact on administrative burden or costs to business or employers.
Regulatory cooperation and alignment
These amendments are not related to any commitments related to other regulatory jurisdictions.
Strategic environmental assessment
A preliminary environmental scan revealed no environmental impacts associated with this regulatory amendment.
Gender-based analysis plus (GBA+)
These regulations will assist workers in a broad sense who are unable to return to work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the regulations do not target persons of a particular gender or identified group, preliminary data regarding workers who have accessed the Canada Emergency Response Benefit indicates that beneficiaries identify as 48% female and 51% male; that 19% are aged 15–24, 23% aged 25–34, 20% aged 35–44, 17% aged 45–54, 15% aged 55–64, and 5% aged 65 and older. These figures reflect those who claimed the benefit through the Canada Revenue Agency portal or the Employment Insurance portal.
These amendments will allow the Government of Canada to provide support to workers affected by COVID-19, and facilitate the gradual re-opening of the economy.
Implementation, compliance and enforcement, and service standards
These regulations will be implemented immediately upon coming into force.
Employment Insurance Policy
Skills and Employment Branch
Employment and Social Development Canada
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