By Monika Sidhu
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Thursday his government will provide another $19 billion over the next six to eight months to help the economy safely restart.
This funding will help ensure the provinces and territories have “the support they need to protect the health of Canadians, help people get back to work safely and prepare for a potential second wave,” said Trudeau during his daily conference.
Trudeau added that there will be seven priority areas supported by this investment including increased testing, contact tracing and more personal protective equipment (PPE).
The plan also calls for funding toward vulnerable communities like in long-term care homes and retirement homes.
The government will provide necessary childcare options and grant paid sick days to help Candians safely return to work.
Trudeau said COVID19 isn’t just a health crisis, but also an economic crisis.
“So when we talk about the recovery phase it’s not just about making sure we can detect, control and prevent future outbreaks, it’s also about helping people, businesses and entire communities adjust to our new normal.”
The priority for the demands of the provincial and territorial health care systems is to support mental health, substance abuse and homelessness during the pandemic, said Deputy Prime minister Chrystia Freeland.
“We know one thing, we can only meet this huge challenge effectively if we work together as Team Canada,” she said. “If we set aside our partisan divisions and we all come together to get our country through this.”.
A reporter asked the prime minister about the WE controversy. The Trudeau family shares financial ties with the charity and has been paid to appear on its events. The organization had just recently received $19.5 million from the federal government.
Trudeau said he will try to be as transparent and open as possible. “We’re still making determinations around what further openness we can show.