Greens call for an extension on full CRB as deadline for reduced payments looms

OTTAWA  – The Green Party of Canada is calling on the government to abandon its cuts to the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB). 

Almost 735,000 new individuals were approved for CRB between June 20 to July 3, yet the benefit has been cut from $500 to $300 a week ($270 after tax withholding) from July 17.

“Too many Canadians still need the CRB and these proposed cuts will leave people with not nearly enough to live on in many parts of Canada,” said Green Party Leader Annamie Paul. “Although pandemic restrictions are slowly being lifted across the country, employment opportunities are not keeping pace. It will take months of no restrictions before we see a full reopening of the economy.”

“And while vaccines are helping to drive down COVID-19 case numbers across Canada, it’s clear from watching other countries that variants can quickly drive those numbers back up.”

“Three hundred dollars a week, less after withholding tax is deducted, is not enough to support the many people who have been unable to find their way back into the job market, whether it be for part-time or full-time employment. A Statistics Canada report in September and October 2020 found that almost two-thirds of businesses had laid off half or more of their workforce since the outset of the pandemic. Many of those businesses are now permanently closed.”

“While the government acted quickly to provide pandemic support to citizens and the business sector, it is going to take more time for a full recovery to kick in and for employment to return to pre pandemic levels. Until then, we need to continue to bridge the gaps. “

“The cost of living is going up, affordable housing is disappearing and a growing mental health crisis is emerging. Now is not the time to add stress to people’s lives. Now is the time to continue the support that many must rely on to get them through. 

“I urge the federal government to extend the full CRB benefit until Canada’s recovery is in full swing. It is the right thing to do.”

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For more information or to arrange an interview:

Rosie Emery

Press Secretary