Federal Government Announces $19B in Support for Provinces, Municipalities through Safe Restart Agreement

July 16, 2020

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a federal investment of more than $19 billion to help provinces, territories and municipalities safely restart their economies through the Safe Restart Agreement. The funding is aimed at addressing seven priority areas:
  • enhancing capacity for testing, contact tracing, and data management and information sharing to mitigate future outbreaks

  • investments in health care to respond to the pandemic, including support for Canadians experiencing challenges with substance use, mental health, or homelessness

  • support for vulnerable Canadians – including those in long-term care, home care, and palliative care – who are at risk of more severe cases of COVID-19

  • funding to secure a reliable source of personal protective equipment, and to recover some of the costs from previous investments made by provincial and territorial governments

  • support to ensure that safe and sufficient child care spaces are available to support parents’ gradual return to work

  • joint funding with the provinces and territories to support municipalities on the front lines of restarting the economy, including by putting in place precautions for public spaces and essential services to reduce the spread of the virus, as well as a dedicated stream of funding for public transit

  • a temporary income support program that will provide workers who do not have paid sick leave with access to 10 days of paid sick leave related to COVID-19

The funding will be distributed to Canada's provincial and territorial governments, with Ontario set to receive $7 billion. To access the funding, each province and territory will need to outline how they will invest these funds.

Support for Municipalities

The Government of Canada will contribute up to $2 billion to support municipalities with COVID-19 operating costs for the next six to eight months. Provincial and territorial governments will continue to support municipalities, and will cost-match federal supports with investments made this fiscal year. In addition, the Government of Canada will also cost-match approximately $1.8 billion to support any additional provincial/territorial contributions to for public transit.

Child Care

The Government of Canada is working with provinces and territories to ensure sufficient child care is available, by providing $625 million to address the reduced availability of child care spaces and the unique needs stemming from the pandemic.

Pan-Canadian Sick Leave

The Government of Canada will fund a new temporary income support program, at an estimated cost of $1.1 billion. The new program will support workers who do not already have access to other paid sick leave. Where not already available, provinces and territories will establish job-protected sick leave, through regulation or legislation, that allows workers to take up to 10 days leave related to COVID-19.

More Information