Newsletter – October 2020

Check out our October 2020 newsletter for important Local 75 updates!  Read about extended recall rights, government lobbying efforts, local victories and so much more!

Newsletter – October 2020

Check out our October 2020 Newsletter for important Local 75 updates!  Read about extended recall rights, government lobbying efforts, local victories and so much more!

The Fight for CEWS Continues

After the Royal York and Chelsea abruptly ended their participation in the CEWS program to bring back laid off workers, leaving only the Sheraton using the program this way, Local 75 turned up the heat.

Big News for EI and CERB!

On Thursday August 21, 2020 the federal government announced major changes to employment insurance, starting with a 4-week extension to the CERB program.  For most laid-off Local 75 members, that means CERB payments will continue until late September! 
 
Once CERB ends, workers will be transitioned onto regular EI – except with some major improvements to EI announced by the government including:
·      A minimum regular benefit of $400/week for at least 26 weeks.
·      A reduction in the minimum qualifying hours. 
·      Workers can continue to earn income with reduced benefits.
 
The government also announced its plans to create three new “Recovery Benefits” which have to pass a vote. Those proposed benefits include:
·      10-day COVID-related sick leave benefit.
·      A benefit for Caregivers.
·      A benefit for Self-Employed/Gig Worker.

 

Need help filing for EI? Service Canada recently began reopening their offices to the public. To find the closest one to you, click here.

Tell Your MP: Adopt the Three Essentials for Hospitality Workers!

Apply for the Local 75 Hardship Grant!

Applications are open! Local 75 is assisting hospitality workers who have encountered financial difficulties as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, providing one time grants of up to $500! Your application will be reviewed by the Hardship Fund Committee, which consists of rank-and-file members from five different Local 75 properties.
Applications are now closed.

UNITE HERE in The Hill Times

Local 75 President Guled Warsame and Local 40 President Zailda Chan spoke out about the plight of hospitality workers in The Hill Times demanding that the government put workers front and centre in the Federal Relief efforts for Aviation and Hospitality sectors. 

“Desperate to stay afloat, hospitality and airline industries and aviation authorities are asking for sectoral relief, such as forgivable loans, rent and fee waivers, tax deferrals and relaxed regulations. While government should consider the unique impact the pandemic has on our sectors, we believe the industry’s workers must be the centre of any sectoral relief package.”

Members across the country are telling their government “Relief for the industry must include relief for workers!” Click here to add your voice!

UNITE HERE Canada demands hospitality bailout puts workers first!

Local 75 and other UNITE HERE locals across Canada are demanding a seat at the table as Trudeau begins to consider relief packages specifically for hospitality.
Included in our demands: any future support provided to industry sectors such as hotels, airlines & airline caterers, airport or sports stadiums, UNITE HERE is calling on the government to compel employers to:
  • Agree to participate in Canada Emergency Wage Subsity (CEWS) and return at least 100% of workers laid-off due to COVID to the payroll covering wages and benefits throughout the life of the CEWS program.
  • Calculate hospitality workers’ CEWS income with a 12-month average. Workers will otherwise fall through the cracks. Winter is normally marked by short hours, low income and even layoffs, an inappropriate CEWS measure for seasonal workers.
  • Put in place an extended recall period for workers for up to 24 months.
  • Guarantee workers in high Covid-19 risk worksites government certified health and safety training, full PPE and appropriate hazard pay.
Click here to read the letter sent to Minister of Finance Bill Morneau.

Canada Emergency Response Benefit Portal is Now Online

As of this morning (Monday April 6, 2020), the reporting portal for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is now live. If you qualify for EI but have not yet applied, you must go through the CERB portal. Your application will be processed there, where it will be determined whether you qualify for EI or CERB. You will be automatically redirected to the benefit you qualify for. For more information on CERB and EI, check out our FAQ page.

Due to the high volume of Canadians like currently reporting, the Federal Government as advised applicants to log into the portal according to the following guidelines:

CERB is a $2,000 benefit distributed once a month for 4 months. The benefit is taxable – recipients will need to report any payments received on next year’s tax filing. An information slip for the 2020 tax year will be posted on the CRA portal, in My Account under Tax Information Slips (T4 and more).

Be sure to visit our COVID-19 Resource Centre for information and updates.