B.C. Premier John Horgan takes questions at the B.C. legislature, February 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. Premier John Horgan takes questions at the B.C. legislature, February 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. gets $2 billion in latest COVID-19 federal aid package

Sick leave, transit backed by Ottawa, John Horgan says

The B.C. government getting close to $2 billion in the latest federal aid package for provinces, including help for paid sick leave in the COVID-19 pandemic, Premier John Horgan says.

After a lengthy conference call with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other premiers July 16, Horgan congratulated Trudeau for putting $1.1 billion toward paid leave across the country “to make sure that people don’t go to work sick.”

Horgan, Yukon Premier Sandy Silver and Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister spearheaded the effort to extend sick pay to people who don’t have it from their employers. Details on whether the program will be delivered via the Employment Insurance or another method are still to be worked out, but it will be “nationally funded and nationally coordinated,” Horgan said.

He credited provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry for making infection control in workplaces a central part of the province’s relaxing of pandemic controls.

“Dr. Henry made it pretty clear to me early on in the pandemic that the biggest challenge we had in the restart was making sure that people didn’t go to work when they had potential symptoms that could lead to transmission to other workers or customers in the economy,” Horgan said.

The latest federal aid includes 50-50 shared support with B.C. on keeping transit operating and helping municipalities with their costs.

“There’s an increase in funding for mental health issues,” Horgan said. “There’s an increase in funding for child care. There’s an increase in funding for vulnerable populations, those with disabilities, and more to come in that regard.”

RELATED: Ottawa, provinces agree on $19M COVID-19 aid package

RELATED: B.C.’s ban on evictions for unpaid rent to end Sept. 1


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Flooding has become a reality for many communities in the Okanagan Valley as the region faces more extreme weather storms, blamed on the impact of climate change. (File photo)
Okanagan high target for spring flooding

Higher snowpack and mild winter precipitation levels raise concerns for Canada’s insurance industry

Penticton Real Canadian Superstore
New COVID case at Penticton Superstore

The last day the employee worked was Jan. 21

David Kassian and Zoe Kirk show off new signage that will be available to neighbourhoods in high wildlife corridors. (Zoe Kirk photos)
Bears and cougar warning boards created for Okanagan residents

RDOS and Penticton will have the signboards and posters available this spring

South Okanagan West Kooteney MP Richard Cannings celebrated Robbie Burns Night with some haggis and local whiskey while watching the Penticton Scottish Festival society's TV series. (contributed)
Cannings celebrates Robbie Burns night with haggis and Oliver-based whiskey

Penticton Scottish Festival hosted a Robbie Burns night on Shaw TV

Terrance Josephson of the Princeton Posse, at left, and Tyson Conroy of the Summerland Steam clash during a Junior B hockey game at the Summerland Arena in the early spring of 2020. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Test your knowledge of Canada’s national winter sport

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

Auldin Maxwell stacks the 693rd block on the top of record-breaking Jenga tower on Nov. 29. (Submitted)
Salmon Arm boy rests world-record attempt on single Jenga brick

Auldin Maxwell, 12, is now officially a Guinness world record holder.

Wet’suwet’en supporters and Coastal GasLink opponents continue to protest outside the B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, February 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
‘We’re still in it’: Wet’suwet’en push forward on rights recognition

The 670-km Coastal GasLink pipeline was approved by B.C. and 20 elected First Nations councils on its path

Kelowna Fire Department. (FILE)
Early morning downtown Kelowna dumpster fire deemed suspicious

RCMP and the Kelowna Fire Department will conduct investigations into the cause of the blaze

Jennifer Cochrane, a Public Health Nurse with Prairie Mountain Health in Virden, administers the COVID-19 vaccine to Robert Farquhar with Westman Regional Laboratory, during the first day of immunizations at the Brandon COVID-19 vaccination supersite in Brandon, Man., on Monday, January 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tim Smith - POOL
Top doctor urges Canadians to keep up with COVID measures, even as vaccines roll out

More than 776,606 vaccines have been administered so far

From the left: Midway RCMP Csts. Jonathan Stermscheg and Chris Hansen, Public Servant Leanne Mclaren and Cpl. Phil Peters. Pictured in the front are Mclaren’s dog, Lincoln and Peters’ dog, Angel. Photo courtesy of BC RCMP
B.C. Mounties commended for bringing firewood to elderly woman

Cpl. Phil Peters said he and detachment members acted after the woman’s husband went to hospital

Dr. Jerome Leis and Dr. Lynfa Stroud are pictured at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto on Thursday, January 21, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
‘It wasn’t called COVID at the time:’ One year since Canada’s first COVID-19 case

The 56-year-old man was admitted to Toronto’s Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

An Uber driver’s vehicle is seen after the company launched service, in Vancouver, Friday, Jan. 24, 2020. Several taxi companies have lost a court bid to run Uber and Lyft off the road in British Columbia. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Taxi companies lose court bid to quash Uber, Lyft approvals in British Columbia

Uber said in a statement that the ruling of the justice is clear and speaks for itself

(Hal Brindley - Dreamstime)
Enderby farmers caught between coyotes and bylaw tickets

The Smith family is stuck in a Catch-22 between protecting their livestock and incurring noise complaints

Most Read