Keep people healthy

Ontario Helps People Impacted by COVID-19 Get Back to Work

New Programs Focus on Hospitality Workers and Apprentices


The government is providing an Ontario Tools Grant of $2.5 million in 2020-21 and $7.5 million in 2021-22 and ongoing. This will help new eligible apprentices purchase the equipment they need to start their careers. 

UNITE HERE will operate the Virtual Action Centre. UNITE HERE is a union that represents workers in hotels, restaurants, racetracks and casinos, laundry and food service companies, airport concessions and apparel, textile and general manufacturing and distribution centers.

Canada Emergency Response Benefit

The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) supports Canadians by providing urgently needed financial support to employed and self-employed Canadians who have been directly affected by COVID-19. It provides a payment of $2,000 for a 4 week period (equivalent to $500 a week) for up to 16 weeks. You will be able to apply for the new CERB in My Account or using the automated phone line starting April 6, 2020.

  • Access through your CRA My Account 

  • or by calling toll free 1-800-959-2019

If you applied for EI regular or sickness benefits on March 15, 2020 or later, your claim will be automatically processed through the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.

Labour Law Webinar

Pre-recorded Webinar from EMC now available: Labour Law & How it pertains to COVID-19. Many of the EI & legal questions being asked were addressed during this webinar.

Canadian Payroll Association 

The Canadian Payroll Association provided excellent resources regarding COVID-19 related questions and issues that companies may face 

Work-Sharing Program

Work-Sharing (WS) is an adjustment program designed to help employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity that is beyond the control of the employer

Work-Sharing Program - Temporary special measures for the downturn in business due to COVID-19 and for the forestry and steel and aluminum sector.

Small Business Wage Subsidies

The Government of Canada is providing eligible small employers a temporary wage subsidy for a period of three months. The subsidy will be equal to 10% of remuneration paid during that period, up to a maximum subsidy of $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer. Businesses are able to benefit immediately from this support by reducing their remittances of income tax withheld on their employees’ remuneration. 

UPDATE: Wage subsidy now at 75% (up from 10%) - retroactive to Sunday March 15

Government boosts wage subsidy to 75% for small, medium businesses to avoid layoffs during COVID-19 crisis. The prime minister said the wage subsidies will be backdated to March 15, 2020. 

Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB)

The Ontario Government is enabling $1.9 billion in relief for employers to reduce the financial strain on business brought on by COVID-19. The measure, which will run through the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB), will see premium payments deferred for six months for all businesses in the province.

Additionally, the WSIB will cease interest accrual on all outstanding premium payments. They will not charge penalties during this six-month deferral period. There will be no negative consequences for businesses who defer premium reporting and payments. The WSIB will continue to fully cover workers at eligible workplaces.

Record of Employment on the Web (ROE Web)

ROE Web is a secure, online application that allows employers to create, submit, and print ROEs online. It improves service to employees who are applying for Employment Insurance benefits and reduces administrative burden on employers.

Employment and Social Development Canada

Updates regarding:

  • Employment Insurance - Record of Employment (reduced waiting period and other information)
  • Work-Sharing Program
  • Labor Program and federally regulated workplaces

My Service Canada Account

(MSCA) is a secure online portal that lets you apply, view and update your information for Employment Insurance (EI)

Wage Earner Protection Program (WEPP)

When an employer files for bankruptcy or becomes subject to a receivership under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, the WEPP provides payments to employees with respect to unpaid wages and vacation.