The Government of Canada is taking strong, immediate, and effective action to protect Canadians and businesses from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Today, the Honourable Mona Fortier, Minister of Middle Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance participated in a virtual town hall, organized by CIVIX, to answer questions from students across Canada. CIVIX is a non-partisan, national registered charity dedicated to building the skills and habits of active and engaged citizenship among young Canadians.
Minister Fortier discussed the challenges currently facing young Canadians impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and highlighted the government’s support for young Canadians through its COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. Minister Fortier addressed issues such as loss of family income, challenges regarding their continued education and other stresses that students may be facing.
The government is supporting young Canadians through programs such as the Canada Child Benefit and the Canada Summer Jobs Program. Also, to help young Canadians who are worried and anxious about the impact of the pandemic, the government is providing support for youth mental health services.
Today’s CIVIX town hall was Minister Fortier’s 18th outreach event in the past two months. Her meetings and town halls have spanned the country.
The government continues to assess and respond to the impacts of COVID-19. It stands ready to take additional actions as needed to stabilize the economy and mitigate the impacts of the pandemic.
“The government recognizes that young Canadians are being significantly affected by the economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. At this unprecedented time, it is especially important that we listen to their concerns and take the time to answer their questions. We will continue to closely monitor the impacts of the outbreak on youth, and do what it takes to get them and their families the help they need.”
– Mona Fortier, Minister of Middle Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance
The government has taken many actions to address the needs of young Canadians through the outbreak of COVID-19, including:
- Increasing the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) once again in July, to help families keep up with the costs of living and raising their children. The increase will be in place for the 2020-21 benefit year, and will raise the maximum benefit to $6,765 per child under age 6, and $5,708 per child aged 6 through 17. This increase is in addition to a one-time special CCB payment to help families deal with the added pressures of COVID-19. On May 20, 2020, this special payment gave families receiving the CCB an additional $300 per child, delivering almost $2 billion in extra support across the country to help families during this challenging period.
- Supporting young Canadians as they look for summer employment through temporary changes to the Canada Summer Jobs program that will help employers hire summer staff and provide young Canadians access to the jobs they need during this unprecedented time. This program will help create up to 70,000 jobs for young Canadians between 15 and 30 years of age.
- Expanding the existing federal employment, skills development, and youth programming to create up to 116,000 jobs, placements, and other training opportunities to help students find employment and develop valuable skills this summer and over the coming months.
- Contributing $7.5 million to Kids Help Phone to provide young people with the mental health support they need during this difficult time. COVID-19 is having a disproportionate impact on vulnerable populations who may be less able to deal with the health, social, and economic impacts of the pandemic. Risks of stress, hardship, and abuse are expected to rise as people become unable to access the social and community supports on which they rely in their everyday lives.
- Providing students who choose to do national service and serve their communities with up to $5,000 for their education in the fall through the new Canada Student Service Grant.