B.C. Premier John Horgan takes questions at the B.C. legislature, February 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. gets $2 billion in latest COVID-19 federal aid package

Sick leave, transit backed by Ottawa, John Horgan says

The B.C. government getting close to $2 billion in the latest federal aid package for provinces, including help for paid sick leave in the COVID-19 pandemic, Premier John Horgan says.

After a lengthy conference call with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other premiers July 16, Horgan congratulated Trudeau for putting $1.1 billion toward paid leave across the country “to make sure that people don’t go to work sick.”

Horgan, Yukon Premier Sandy Silver and Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister spearheaded the effort to extend sick pay to people who don’t have it from their employers. Details on whether the program will be delivered via the Employment Insurance or another method are still to be worked out, but it will be “nationally funded and nationally coordinated,” Horgan said.

He credited provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry for making infection control in workplaces a central part of the province’s relaxing of pandemic controls.

“Dr. Henry made it pretty clear to me early on in the pandemic that the biggest challenge we had in the restart was making sure that people didn’t go to work when they had potential symptoms that could lead to transmission to other workers or customers in the economy,” Horgan said.

The latest federal aid includes 50-50 shared support with B.C. on keeping transit operating and helping municipalities with their costs.

“There’s an increase in funding for mental health issues,” Horgan said. “There’s an increase in funding for child care. There’s an increase in funding for vulnerable populations, those with disabilities, and more to come in that regard.”

RELATED: Ottawa, provinces agree on $19M COVID-19 aid package

RELATED: B.C.’s ban on evictions for unpaid rent to end Sept. 1


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Financial fallback plan in place for Mills Memorial replacement

That’s in case province rejects first submission

Local Skeena candidates for the Oct. 24 snap election

Current BC Liberal MLA Ellis Ross will be running again, as will Nicole Halbauer for BC NDP

Citing stability, B.C. Premier calls snap election for Oct. 24

John Horgan meets with Lieutenant Governor to request vote

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

B.C. reports 96 new COVID-19 cases, one hospital outbreak

61 people in hospital as summer ends with election

B.C. could be without a new leader for multiple weeks after Election Day: officials

More than 20K mail-in voting packages were requested within a day of B.C. election being called

Refresh of Liberal government’s agenda comes amid new looming COVID-19 crisis

Lockdowns saw fed spending soar to historic levels in effort to offset pandemic’s blow to Canadians’ livelihoods

BC Liberals must change gears from election cynicism, focus on the issues: UBC professors

COVID-19 response and recovery is likely to dominate platforms

‘Unprecedented’ coalition demands end to B.C. salmon farms

First Nations, commercial fishermen among group calling for action on Cohen recommendations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Earthquake off coast of Washington recorded at 4.1 magnitude

The quake was recorded at a depth of 10 kilometres

B.C.’s top doctor says she’s received abuse, death threats during COVID-19 response

Henry has become a national figure during her time leading B.C.’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Vancouver Island sailor stranded in U.S. hospital after suffering massive stroke at sea

Oak Bay man was attempting to circumnavigate the world solo

Most Read