Information about the Government of British Columbia's temporary pandemic pay program for provincially-funded workplaces.
Latest Update - December 18th, 2020: The Government of B.C. released an update on the distribution of outstanding payments. These payments will continue to be distributed regularly as they process the claims. Delays are largely due to administrative complexities associated with distributing a new program to an estimated 250,000 employees working for hundreds of different employers. They expect to complete nearly all claims by the end of January 2021.
Latest Update - November 2nd, 2020: The 16-week eligibility period for the program ended on July 4th, 2020, and the employer submission period for claims has now closed. Funding will continue to be disbursed beyond October as submissions received before the deadline and those coming in late are processed.
What is Temporary Pandemic Pay?
Temporary pandemic pay supports health, social services, and corrections employees delivering in-person, front-line care during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes employees delivering a range of health and social services to people most vulnerable to COVID-19, where maintaining physical distancing is difficult or impossible.
Eligible workers can expect to receive a lump-sum payment equivalent to about $4 per hour for straight-time hours worked anytime over a 16-week period, starting on March 15th, 2020.
No application is required. The Government provides the funds to employers, who are then responsible for distributing the funds to eligible employees as lump-sum payments.
Who is Eligible?
It is available to full-time, part-time, and casual workers who:
- Have been working straight-time hours at any point during the 16-week period starting on March 15th, 2020
- Work in an eligible sector, workplace, and role delivering in-person, front-line care
- Provide additional support and relief to front-line workers by working in ways that directly serve vulnerable populations
- It is taxable
- It does not affect your pension as it's a lump sum
- It is not part of your base salary
- It is not a wage increase
- It does not impact eligibility for Employment Insurance (EI) or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
- It does not apply to time where employees were not in the workplace due to vacation or any authorized paid leave, including sick leave
- Workers in a union should consult with their employer to confirm whether dues will apply to this specific lump-sum payment