Trudeau seeking approval from Parliament for $9 billion student relief plan


Published April 29, 2020 at 4:15 pm


In a shorter than usual address to the nation this morning, Justin Trudeau spoke about the federal government’s $9 billion plan to help students impacted by COVID-19, which is set to go to the House of Commons today for approval.

Included in that plan is the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB), which will directly provide $1250 a month from May to August to current post-secondary students, students starting post-secondary in September, and those who graduated in December 2019.

For students who have a disability or act as a caretaker, the CESB will instead provide $1750 a month.

“Since we introduced this plan, we’ve been working with the opposition parties on legislation that will get this help to young people as quickly as possible,” Trudeau said.

“I’ll be heading to Parliament shortly, where we will introduce a bill to put the Canada Emergency Student Benefit in place.”

Other aspects of the plan include the federal government creating 76,000 jobs for young people, in addition to the Canada Summer Jobs program, which will be in sectors that need extra help or are on the frontlines during the pandemic. Specific help will also be provided to Indigenous students.

Additionally, the government says it will double the student grants it gives out for the 2020/2021 school year. For student researchers and graduate students, the government will reportedly invest over $291 million to extend scholarships, fellowships and grants to make sure those students can keep working — an extension of either three or four months, depending on each student’s funding.

Students spending their summer volunteering in efforts against COVID-19 will be eligible for $1000 to $5000 (depending on their hours) through the new Canada Student Service grant.

Today, Trudeau announced new help for parents via a boost to the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) payment they can expect in May. To help lower-income Canadians, the government has also supplemented the GST credit.

“This year, if you owe income tax, you have until August to make your payment,” Trudeau said.

In an update on the COVID-19 modelling, the prime minister says the country is seeing progress and the curve has reportedly flattened in many parts of Canada. He asked residents to keep up the social distancing.

“We’re seeing some progress because people from coast to coast to coast are making sacrifices and following public health rules,” Trudeau said. “So let’s stick to it.”

To salute Canadians doing their part during the pandemic, the prime minister says the Canadian Armed Forces’ Snowbirds will fly over Canada, starting this weekend in Nova Scotia and heading west.

“As we watch the Snowbirds fly over our homes, let’s remember that we’re all in this together,” he concluded.

More details on all federal government financial aid benefits can be found at

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