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Justin Trudeau addressed media on Monday, ensuring Canadians that he and his government were in their corner.
"What is a normal life will take a long time to return, and even at this point, two or three years from now, even once a vaccine against COVID-19 is available, we will have changed our behaviour. We will have taken measures as a society that will be different from what we used to do," Trudeau said in French.
Trudeau said that careful reopenings in certain sectors of the economy would be permitted as Canadians get back to something "a little more like normal," but that until a vaccine or system of treatment is found, that Canadians would have to be very careful.
"If anytime, if we loosen our measures too much, we could find ourselves back in a tremendous spike," said Trudeau, mentioning the Spanish Flu of 1917. "We need to stay vigilant every step of the way," Trudeau concluded.
Trudeau announced that employers could now submit applications to the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. The subsidy would give funds to employers to the tune of 75 percent. The fund would provide up to $847 per week, per employer.
The first payments should arrive on May 7, Trudeau said.
Trudeau said that nearly 10,000 Canadian businesses have already applied for the wage subsidy program since the portal opened at 6 am.
An online calculator launched last week by the Canada Revenue Agency has been visited 300,000 times since its launch, Trudeau said.
The prime minister also clarified that Canadians would be able to collect CERB, or the federal wage subsidy, not both. Those who collect both will be required to pay it back. Trudeau said the government is keeping record of who is being paid what.
Trudeau also touched on Parliament reconvening to better help Canadians, saying "Parliament will have its first virtual sitting tomorrow, and an in-person sitting Wednesday."
Trudeau said that the federal government and the provinces are working on a shared timeline to reopen the economy, saying that different provinces would be able to "move at a different pace."
The prime minister commended Canadians for following provincial and federal instructions from health officials that has allowed Trudeau to not use the Emergency Measures Act.
When touching on residential rent relief for Canadians, Trudeau referred to the CERB and the 75 percent wage subsidy, saying that those benefits could be used for a "number of things."
When asked about a potential health passport that would show personal health information in an exchange to return to work or school, Trudeau said that it was "premature to even speculate" about that as an option, as there still remains a lack of evidence that people cannot contract the virus twice.