Canadians who are unable to work because they are caring for a child or family member due to COVID-19 are now eligible to apply for the new Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB).
The benefit is available for workers who don’t qualify for Employment Insurance and aren’t able to access paid sick leave or receive money from a workplace sickness benefit.
Many PSAC members – especially those in the post-secondary education sector and in precarious jobs – could benefit from this new financial assistance.
The benefit will not replace 699 leave, or other leave with pay, which is available to federal public service workers who must take time off to care for children or family members due to COVID-19.
The Caregiving Benefit will overlap with the assistance provided by the Canada Recovery Benefit and the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit to provide more Canadians economic support during the pandemic. However, PSAC and the Canadian Labour Congress continue to push the government to overhaul its EI system so that no worker ever slips through the cracks.
How does the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit work?
You can claim $500 per week for up to 26 weeks, any time between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021. You apply for the CRCB two weeks at a time through your Canada Revenue Agency My Account portal.
You must wait until after you miss work to apply, and within 60 days of missing work.
Who can apply?
To qualify for the CRCB, you must meet all the following conditions:
- Live in Canada, be at least 15 years old and have a Social Insurance Number;
- Be employed on the day before you would receive a CRCB payment;
- Have earned at least $5,000 in 2019 or in the 12 months before you apply;
- Not be eligible for EI.
To claim CRCB for child care reasons, one of the following must apply:
- Your child can’t go to school or child care provider because it’s closed or accepting fewer children or students due to COVID-19;
- A doctor ordered your child not to go to school because they have COVID-19, it’s suspected they may have COVID-19 or they have a condition that makes them more vulnerable to COVID-19;
- Your child’s regular caregiver is unavailable because of COVID-19.
To claim CRCB to care for a family member, one of the following must apply:
- They are a family member who is a dependant or has a disability, and it must be a close family member;
- Their day program or care home can’t take care of them;
- They have COVID-19 or they’ve been told to self-isolate by their employer or medical professional due to COVID-19;
- Their doctor has told them they should not go to their normal care program or facility because they’re at extra risk of contracting COVID-19;
- Their regular caregiver is not available because of COVID-19.
Who is eligible
|Amount and how to apply|
|Canada Recovery Benefit||
For workers who don't qualify for EI because they're self-employed or independent contractors. To qualify, you must:
|Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit||
For workers who don't qualify for EI who are sick or must self-isolate because of COVID-19. To qualify, you:
|Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit||
For workers who don't qualify for EI who can't work because they need to care for a child or family member for reasons related to COVID-19. To qualify you:
With files from Steps to Justice