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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

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Prime Minister’s remarks on supports announced to help Canadians during COVID-19

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Hello everyone.

Over the past few weeks, members of the Canadian Armed Forces have been helping out in long-term care facilities and seniors’ residences in Quebec and Ontario.

Ontario and Quebec have asked us to extend the Army’s mission and, as I said yesterday, our government is currently discussing it with them.

Our members are doing an extraordinary job helping our grandparents, parents, and seniors during this crisis, and I thank them very much.

It is certainly not an easy job or an easy situation.

This morning, the Government of Quebec released the Canadian Forces members’ report outlining a number of concerning issues.

Several of the issues in the report—like the lack of staff—were among the reasons why Premier Legault requested the Army’s assistance a month and a half ago.

There are serious concerns that had to be brought to Quebec’s attention and we sent the province the report last night.

I also spoke with Premier Legault earlier this morning and I reiterated our support.

Tomorrow, I plan on raising what’s happening in nursing homes and long-term care facilities with the premiers during our weekly call.

I will once again offer our government’s support as they try to get the situation under control.

As I’ve said many times, we need to do a better job of caring for seniors.

They raised us. They built this country. They deserve better.

During the first few weeks of the crisis, people’s lives were turned upside down.

Hundreds of thousands of Canadians lost their job through no fault of their own—without warning—because of this pandemic.

It put enormous financial pressure on everyone, from students to young professionals to families.

So, we brought in the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) to support people until they’re able to get back to work.

And to help as many Canadians as possible keep their jobs or get hired, we introduced the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy.

We also unveiled our $9-billion plan to help students and recent grads get through the next few months.

We now have over 45,000 jobs available for young people. If you or someone you know is interested, go to jobbank.gc.ca to apply.

Now, as provinces and territories restart some activities and many people head back to work, fewer people will need the help of the CERB.

But the wage subsidy will continue to be there to support Canadians, and make sure they can get paid their salaries.

Maintaining the connection between employer and employee is key not just to helping people get back on their feet, but to keeping our economy strong.

That’s why it’s so important that employers take advantage of this program and rehire workers.

If you are an employer or a business owner but have not yet applied, I encourage you to visit the Canada Revenue Agency website to do so. 

As I have said since the beginning, to get through this crisis, everyone has to do their part.

To save lives, people have to continue practising physical distancing.

To restart the economy, people need to work, and merchants and businesses need to have customers.

So, if you’re an employer, rehire your employees.

Our government can and will help you.