Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Canada Emergency Student Benefit CESB

$9-billion in financial aid for students in Canada announced with the CESB

Details about the Canada Emergency Student Benefit were revealed today.

In this morning’s daily briefing, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a new wave of financial aid to support Canadian students during the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of $9-billion is being invested in students who are not yet eligible for the federal programs that have already been put in place, like the CERB. This includes the creation of the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB), which will offer between $1,250 to $1,750 to students per month.

“Many students are eligible for the new programs we’ve brought in over the last few weeks. Many students will get the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). But others won’t, and that leaves some young people worried about what they’re going to do. COVID-19 has meant that there aren’t as many jobs out there for students. And without a job, it can be hard to pay for tuition or day-to-day expenses. You may normally have turned to your parents for help, but right now Mom and Dad are stretched, too. And even if monthly bills aren’t the concern, you may have been counting on a summer job for next year’s tuition, or to get the right experience for your career. As young people, what you’re going through matters and we want to make sure that you will be okay. So today I’m announcing our plan to support students right across the country. We are launching the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) to provide immediate help. At the same time, we will create new student jobs and double student grants, among other things. All of these measures will add up to approximately $9-billion for students. For today, for the summer, for next year, we are going to be there for you.

“Right now you may be worried about how to make ends meet,” Trudeau continued. “You probably can’t work your normal job and that might be a big problem for rent or for groceries. With the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB), you will get $1,250 a month from May to August. And if you take care of someone else or have a disability, that CESB amount will go up to $1,750 each month. This benefit is designed for you if you are a post-secondary student right now, if you’re going to college in September or if you graduated in December 2019. It’s there for you even if you have a job, but you were only making up to $1,000 a month. The period covered by the benefit will start on May 1. And your payments will be delivered to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).”

Prime Minister Trudeau also confirmed details about new jobs that would be created for students this summer, as well as support for volunteers, Indigenous students and graduate students.

“Our government is creating 76,000 jobs for young people, in addition to the Canada Summer Jobs program. These placements will be in sectors that need an extra hand right now or are on the front lines of this pandemic. We are also going to be providing specific support for Indigenous students. And for student researchers and graduate students, we are going to invest over $291-million to extend scholarships, fellowships and grants to make sure you can keep working. Depending on your funding, it will be extended by three to four months.

“Volunteering can be a fantastic way to build skills, make contact contacts or just give back,” Trudeau added. “If you were volunteering instead of working we’re going to make sure that you have support too. Students helping in the fight against COVID-19 this summer will soon be eligible for $1,000 to $5,000, depending on your hours through the new Canada Student Service Grant. Your energy and your skills can do a lot of good work. At the same time we will provide over $75-million to increase support specifically for First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nations students.” ■

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