The federal government has announced more significant financial support for students and other young Canadians struggling to stay afloat and find jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. The new measures of nearly $9 billion include newly announced Canada Emergency Student Benefit and Canada Student Service Grant.
To kick-start the program, the Government of Canada willintroduce the necessary legislation in Parliament.
Canada Emergency Student Benefit
- Canada Emergency Student Benefit will give students $1250 a month from May to August.
- If you are taking care of somebody else or have a disability the amount will rise to $1750 each month.
- The benefit will start on May 1 for those postsecondary students who are going to school in September including those who are currently enrolled, or if you have graduated in December 2019.
- Students with a job, but earning less than $1,000 a month can apply.
- It will be delivered through the Canada Revenue Agency.
“For today for the summer for next year, we are going to be there for you,” said Trudeau.
Canada Student Service Grant
Trudeau also announced the new Canada Student Service Grant, which will help students gain valuable work experience and skills while they help their communities during the COVID‑19 pandemic. The measures include:
- Those who volunteer over the summer to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 will be paid between $1,000 and $5,000, depending on the hours they work.
- Double the Canada Student Grants for all eligible full-time students to up to $6,000 and up to $3,600 for part-time students in 2020-21.
- The Canada Student Grants for Students with Permanent Disabilities and Students with Dependents would also be doubled.
Other Measures For Students Announced Today
- Broaden eligibility for student financial assistance by removing the expected student’s and spouse’s contributions in 2020-21, in recognition that many students and families will struggle to save for school this year.
- Enhance the Canada Student Loans Program by raising the maximum weekly amount that can be provided to a student in 2020-21 from $210 to $350.
- Increase existing distinctions-based support for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nation students pursuing post-secondary education by providing an additional $75.2 million in 2020-21.
- Extend expiring federal graduate research scholarships and postdoctoral fellowships, and supplement existing federal research grants, to support students and post-doctoral fellows, by providing $291.6 million to the federal granting councils.
- The government intends to enhance work opportunities for graduate students and post-doctoral fellows through the National Research Council of Canada.
- The federal government will allow international students to work more than 20 hours per week subject to certain conditions.
The new measures are intended to target support at young people who have fallen through the cracks of other emergency financial assistance.
Some students, for instance, have complained that they don’t qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefitwhich $500 a week for up to 16 weeks to Canadians who have lost their jobs due to the pandemic and had an income of at least $5,000 in the previous 12 months — criteria that doesn’t apply to many students.
Today’s measures are in addition to some steps the federal government has already taken to specifically help young people weather the health crisis. It has put a six-month, interest-free moratorium on student loan repayments. It has also bolstered the Canada Summer Jobs program in a bid to encourage employers to hire young workers for essential jobs.
Employers this year will receive a subsidy of up to 100 per cent of the provincial or territorial minimum hourly wagefor each youth employee — up from the usual wage subsidy of 50 per cent.
— With files from Canadian Press