Canadians share stories about how CERB, government programs helped them during COVID-19
On Wednesday, the government released a fiscal snapshot revealing a deficit of $343 billion. While the Conservatives called the government out on excessive spending, people on Twitter expressed just how much CERB helped them weather the COVID-19 storm.
Though this spending is one of the highest in Canadian history, the country’s charges to service the debt are at one of the lowest points in history and the deficit is lower than peak spending during the Second World War. Experts say income supplements for vulnerable people and wage subsidies have been the big points of government spending during this pandemic.
Almost immediately upon the release of the snapshot, the Conservatives called for the Liberals to introduce spending cuts. On Twitter, however, people expressed just how much the CERB had helped them:
The introduction of the CERB likely saved Canada from a worse COVID outbreak because people were able to stay at home instead of risking their lives to go to work. At the onset of the pandemic, it became clear that the current employment insurance model would not be able to handle mass unemployment.
Some have called for the CERB to be expanded and extended, including NDP leader Jagmeet Singh who has called for making the CERB universal.
About 7 million people accessed federal aid at the height of the crisis during Canada’s highest unemployment rates in 70 years. If social media is any indication, then it’s clear that measures such as the CERB has helped people weather one of the most difficult economic periods in Canadian history.