A paramedic disinfects the handle on the door of an ambulance outside the Hotel-Dieu hospital in Montreal, Sunday, May 3, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

‘Pandemic pay’ to give temporary wage top-up to 250,000 B.C. front-line workers

That equates to a total of $2,240 for someone who worked 35 hours each week for 16 weeks

More than 250,000 eligible front-line workers in B.C. will soon be receiving a “pandemic pay” wage top-up, as part of a shared-cost emergency program for essential sectors.

The amount, which will be doled out as a lump-sum payment through employers will amount to an extra $4 per hour for up to 16 weeks of work, retroactive to March 15.

According to the government, that equates to a total of $2,240 for someone who worked 35 hours each week.

“From care aids to domestic violence workers, to people working in corrections and others delivering essential addictions and mental health supports, our front-line workers are providing vital support to people who are most vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Finance Minister Carole James said in a statement Tuesday (May 19).

“Temporary pandemic pay recognizes all that our health and social service workers do to help keep people healthy, our communities running and deliver important care and services to the most vulnerable during this challenging time.”

The wage top-up is part of a cost-shared program announced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in early May. The pay is part of the province’s $5-billion COVID-19 Action Plan.

READ MORE: Some essential workers to get wage top-up

Unlike the B.C. Emergency Benefit for Workers and other federal programs brought in to help curb financial losses from COVID-19, eligible workers will not need to apply for the temporary pay hike and instead receive the payment directly through their employer.

A list of eligible sectors can be found on the B.C. government website.

To receive temporary pandemic pay, an employee must:

  • Have been working straight-time hours at any point during the 16-week period starting on March 15, 2020, at the height of the Province’s response to the pandemic
  • Casual and on-call workers who have worked straight- time hours during this period are also eligible
  • Work in an eligible sector, workplace and role delivering in-person, front-line care in health, social services and corrections
  • Provide additional support and relief to front-line workers by working in ways that directly serve vulnerable populations

In B.C., minimum wage is currently $13.85 per hour, and will be increased to $14.60 on June 1.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

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

Just Posted

CVRD may have to delay 11 capital projects scheduled for 2020

More than 50 of the 81 projects are complete or are schedule for the year

Vancouver Island’s current COVID-19 case count officially hits zero

Of the 130 recorded Island Health cases, five people have died, 125 recovered

Mill Bay students holding out hope for a more traditional graduation

Disappointment likely looms, according to a SD79 report

VIU leadership conference online for month of June

Students and community members can sign up for the speaker series and/or the excursion series

MAP: Dr. Henry reveals which B.C. regions have seen most COVID-19 cases

B.C. health officials release a first look at how the novel coronavirus has reached all corners of the province

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Plan in place for BC Ferries to start increasing service levels

Ferry corporation reaches temporary service level agreement with province

B.C. starts to see employment return under COVID-19 rules

Jobless rate for young people still over 20% in May

Alert Bay resident carves tribute to his community kicking COVID-19’s butt

‘Our little village crushed the curve with love and commitment’

End of an Era: Tofino hair studio closes shop

“We were getting excited to start ramping up and then all of sudden we had to close our doors.”

Kelowna Mountie on desk duty following ‘aggressive’ arrest

The officer involved in an arrest that took place on May 30 in Kelowna has been placed on administrative duties

Protests shift to memorializing George Floyd amid push for change

‘There is something better on the other side of this,’ says Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottom

Most Read