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The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) ends Saturday. Here’s what you need to know about the program that replaces it

The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) ends Saturday. Here’s what you need to know about the program that replaces it
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The federal government is ending the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) Saturday to make way for a new benefit program for people in industries affected by lockdowns.

On Thursday, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland , replacing the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) that’s set to expire Oct. 23.

Here’s what we know about the new benefit program and what it means for those currently on the CRB.

What is the Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit?

The Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit will provide $300 a week to people whose work is affected by lockdowns.

In Thursday’s press conference, Freeland said that this new benefit program is taking a more targeted approach and was created in preparation for industries that may be affected by potential future temporary lockdowns.

Who is eligible for the new benefit?

The government made a point to say it is “strictly available” to people whose jobs are interrupted as a direct result of a government-imposed public health lockdown.

It’s available to workers regardless of whether they qualify for Employment Insurance. Workers who qualify for EI cannot be paid both benefits for the same period.

What if I lose my job because I didn’t get vaccinated?

Details of the program released so far specifically say the program is not open to people “whose loss of income or employment is due to their refusal to adhere to a vaccine mandate.”

How long will the program run?

The Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit will be available until May 7, 2022, and benefits will be accessible for the full length of a government-imposed lockdown. If applicable, retroactive applications may be accepted dating back to Oct. 24.

What was the CRB?

The CRB was introduced last September to support employed and self-employed people who directly affected by COVID-19 and ineligible for Employment Insurance. People who were unemployed or had their income reduced by at least 50 per cent were also qualified for CRB.

Successful applicants received between $540 to $900 for a two-week period depending on when they applied for CRB. After two weeks, people could apply for CRB again for a total of 27 eligibility periods.

The CRB replaced the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), which was introduced early in the pandemic as a response to COVID-19 disrupting the Canadian economy.
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