BREAKING: Trudeau extends wage subsidy by three months

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced an extension to the current wage subsidy program.

At today's briefing, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced an extension to the current wage subsidy program, and support for researchers who are working outside of coronavirus study areas.

While the wage subsidy program was initially planned to run out on June 6, Trudeau said that it will extend to the end of August, for another three months. He noted that this gives businesses "some runway" to "rehire staff, and expand where possible."

"We need you back. We need you on your job and on your team," Trudeau said to workers.

He noted that the eligibility threshold of businesses having experienced a 30 percent decline would be waived, so that businesses don't have to be concerned with failing while they are trying to thrive.

The subsidy covers the cost for eligible businesses' payrolls to 75 percent, with a maximum per week per employee of $847. The total cost is estimated to be $73 billion so far.

The CERB benefit, which has been giving $2,000 to those who have lost work due to the economic closures as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, has cost upwards of $35 billion. It has served over 7.5 million Canadians have benefited from this program, though this is near double to the number that the government was expected to assist.

Medical researchers whose work and funding was stopped, approximately 15,000, have not qualified for the subsidy, and earlier this week Trudeau promised that he would take a look at this and address a remedy.

This is research that deals with non-coronavirus-related medical research, such as cancer, strokes, clinical trials for other conditions and treatments, and additional diseases.

Today, Trudeau announced that $450 million would be available for researchers and research institutions, as well as temporary support on wages. This will help those who are essential, but outside of the coronavirus areas of study, to continue their work.

Trudeau said that jobs are being posted for student workers and recent grads, and that "there are lots of opportunities available."  

He said that "no one program can solve the problem," but that Canadian students can apply for the Canada Emergency Student Benefit.

Benefits won't be cut off if people miss the tax filing deadline, and the benefits will continue to the end of September. People should file their taxes "as soon as they can" to continue receiving the benefits beyond September.