PSE student support program: Does it pass the test? 

Key points: At least 1.17 million post secondary education (PSE) students or recent grads will use the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB). They wouldn’t have been able to access the CERB. 620,000 PSE students will receive the more generous Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) instead. As the winter term winds…
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Show, don’t tell: Canada’s COVID-19 response doesn’t meet students’ needs or reflect their realities

If you’re a young person in Canada right now, chances are you’re used to the government letting you down. Whether you’re a teenager in Ontario affected by education cuts, a university student looking at climbing tuition and housing costs, or happen to live on the planet that’s being gutted for…
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Gender impact of Canada’s income supports

Key Findings 5.3 million women and 3.4 million men were jobless in April. This is up from 1.7 million women and 1.3 million men in March.  In April, 14% of jobless women and 20% of jobless men had no income supports. As a result, 731,000 jobless women and 681,000 jobless…
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Caregiving Beyond the Crisis

I am a child care advocate. And in this COVID-19 pandemic, I am torn. On the one hand, this public health emergency demonstrates what advocates have been saying for a long time – that child care is a vital public service and the lack of it was a crisis for…
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You can’t re-open an economy without workers

Yesterday, the Saskatchewan government revealed its plan to “re-open the Saskatchewan economy.” I will leave critiques about whether the plan adequately addresses testing and the public health needs of the province to those more qualified to make them. Suffice it to say I, like many others, was relieved just to…
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Comparing provincial economic responses to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the vital importance of collective responses via governments at all levels. The Canadian context of federalism, with a division of powers between federal and provincial/territorial governments, also highlights key differences in approaches to the pandemic. At its best, federalism is an advantageous arrangement, with the…
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1.4 million jobless Canadians getting no income support in April

Key Findings Who’s in, who’s out: In April there were 1.4 million jobless Canadians without any income support from EI or CERB, up from 895,000 in March. 16% of all jobless Canadians had no support in April, down from 30% in March. The largest group of excluded workers (549,000) lost…
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Extend tax filing deadline to ensure low incomes receive benefits

With the ongoing COVID-19 state of emergency, the federal government should waive the requirement that low-income individuals complete their 2019 tax forms by June 1st to continue to receive benefits—or extend the tax filing deadline for low incomes until much later. Millions of low-income families, seniors, and people with disabilities…
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The coronavirus crisis: Wake-up call for an economic paradigm shift¹

This article was originally posted on National Newswatch The Trudeau government recently signed an agreement with Amazon to distribute essential medical supplies across Canada in partnership with publicly owned Canada Post and Purolator. Its dependence on Amazon at time of crisis—a corporation with dangerously unsafe workplaces, and an aggressive anti-union…
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