250,000 front line workers to get a temporary wage boost

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Adam Reaburn
Adam Reaburnhttps://energeticcity.ca/
Adam moved to Fort St. John in 2004 and he now owns both Moose FM and Energeticcity.ca

VICTORIA, B.C. – The Province and Federal Government will fund a lump-sum payment for 250,000 eligible front line-workers.

The lump-sum payment will be approximately $4 per hour for 16 weeks starting March 15, 2020.  

“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,” said Carole James, Minister of Finance.

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The money will go to people in B.C. working in the health-care system, social services and corrections. This includes workers delivering a range of health and social services to people most vulnerable to COVID-19.

Meanwhile, the BCGEU is calling on the government to expand the program to more essential workers.

“The BCGEU pushed hard for this program to cover the broadest possible range of essential works and, as a result, B.C.’s program is significantly more inclusive than those in other provinces,” said Stephanie Smith, president of the BCGEU. “We’re happy that some of our lowest-wage members doing some of the highest-risk frontline jobs will be eligible. But the bottom line for us is that all frontline essential workers are shouldering an incredible burden in terms of increased cost, stress and inconvenience as well as increased risks to their emotional and physical health. All of these workers deserve recognition—not just some of them.” 

The following list includes examples of eligible workplaces, with more information available here: www.gov.bc.ca/pandemicpay

Health services

Eligible workplaces include:

  • hospitals;
  • long-term care and assisted-living facilities;
  • provincial mental health facilities;
  • provincially funded home and community care services;
  • public health units;
  • primary care clinics;
  • diagnostic facilities;
  • community clinics; and
  • diagnostic and treatment centres.

Social services


Eligible workplaces include:

  • community living: residential services and intervenor residential sites;
  • Indigenous services: delegated Aboriginal agencies, friendship centres providing critical services, and healing and wellness facilities and shelters;
  • harm reduction: shelters for survivors of gender-based violence and human trafficking, directly operated residential facilities, adult-justice residential facilities, safe injection sites, emergency outreach harm reduction workers, emergency shelters, supportive housing facilities, respite and drop-in centres, temporary shelter facilities, and hotels and motels used for self-isolation or shelter overflow;
  • youth services: high-risk youth services, youth justice residential facilities, licensed children’s residential sites; and
  • immigrant services: high-risk support services for immigrants and refugees, high-risk immigrant youth services and settlement services.

Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction (SDPR) – eligible workplaces include:

  • SDPR income assistance and disability reduction offices;
  • SDPR/Service BC integrated offices; and
  • SDPR contact centre offices.

Ministry of Child and Family Development – eligible workplace includes:

  • Service Delivery Division

Service BC – eligible workplaces include:

  • Service BC offices

BC Housing – eligible workplaces include:


  • BC Housing main location and other offices

Community Living BC – eligible workplaces include:

  • head office and other local offices; and
  • Provincial Assessment Centre.


Eligible workplaces include:

  • adult correctional facilities and youth justice facilities;
  • community corrections offices; and
  • Sheriff Services Division.

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