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View Bill Morneau Profile
Lib. (ON)
I think it is an important question. We are seeing that this challenge is hitting different segments of the population differently. It's hitting low-income workers, in many cases, in a more difficult way than higher-income workers, because many of those workers are losing hours, or the jobs they were occupying are not going on during the course of the COVID-19 crisis.
That was why the emergency response benefit was so important. We knew there were 5.7 million Canadians not attached to an employer who were initially going to be hit, and many of those workers have gone on the CERB.
As part of the recovery, fundamentally what we needed to do was protect those people, and then protect the companies through wage subsidies and credits so that those companies will be around to rehire and to expand afterwards.
Really, it's emergency support for people, and providing a bridge for companies so we can come out of this with a capacity for people to go back to their old jobs—I hope—or, in some cases, move to new jobs that will be there because we've supported businesses.
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