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April 21, 2020

April 21 COVID-19 Update

During the COVID-19 pandemic we will be providing regular updates to our members with concise, relevant information they need for their businesses, employees and personal health.

For a list of industry resources, government programs, FAQs and more, visit our dedicated COVD-19 website at

For more frequent updates please follow us on Twitter @WCANews.

For past editions of these bulletins please visit the News section on our website.

Keep working safely – follow CSAM’s COVID-19 Best Practices

If you have any questions about the pandemic, please email our COVID-19 hotline at

Wage Subsidy Portal Opens April 27

This morning, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made two announcements about the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, the 75% payroll subsidy being in the works from the federal government.Applications will open through CRA on April 27. The government also said they expect 90% of the applications to be processed by May 5 and money to be out the door soon after that.CRA has released a CEWS Calculator that organizations can use to determine how much they’ll be getting from the program while they wait for the funds. This can help them access credit since they know how much money they can expect.¬†Click here to use the calculator.

Workers Compensation Board Giving 20% Rebates

We also learned this morning that the Workers Compensation Board of Manitoba is going to be offering 20% rebates to eligible employers due to a surplus.

The rebate will be 20% of your 2019 premiums, and will be credited to your account in May. In order to qualify, employers must have fulfilled their payroll reporting responsibilities for 2019. If you haven’t yet reported, it’s not too late to report your 2019 payroll to receive the surplus.

Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance

Premier Brian Pallister also announced this morning that Manitoba has signed on to the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program, and will be contributing $16 million to the program. Details on this are still murky, but we know the premiers have a call with Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland today to continue to work on what this will look like. Pallister did mention that the program will involve “forgivable loans” of some sort.

Inter-Provincial Travel

Late last week, we reported that any construction worker returning to Manitoba from out of province must self-isolate for 14 days, under the current public health order. The province clarified this order twice, and as far as we can tell, workers coming back from working in other provinces must self-isolate unless they didn’t travel further than 50km outside the border.

We are aware several of our members have jobs working on critical infrastructure in other provinces – we’re seeking clarity on whether or not these workers would be considered exempt, but it appears as though the order does apply to them at this time.