Trudeau Stresses Travellers Not Entitled To Sickness Benefit But Provides No Details On COVID Testing

Mark Stachiew, Open Jaw

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

In an address from the front steps of Rideau Cottage Tuesday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau clarified that the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit is not intended for people returning from vacation and said more details would be forthcoming on eligibility requirements for the $500-per week benefit. 

"It's not there to pay for someone's post-vacation quarantine," said Trudeau, explaining that it is meant for workers who would otherwise lose income from their jobs if they need to isolate or quarantine because they are sick from the virus or waiting for test results.


He also reiterated the announcement that all travellers entering the country would require a negative COVID PCR test as of JAN07 and reminded Canadians that this isn't a time for non-essential travel and warned them that they do so at their own risk. He said that if there were any sudden changes in the pandemic situation, Ottawa would not conduct mass repatriations of citizens as it did in the spring.


Trudeau said that the 14-day quarantine for travellers would remain as a way to keep the country safe from the coronavirus and act as an additional protection to the population and Canada's health care system. He also said that those who did not have a satisfactory isolation plan could be required to stay in government quarantine facilities. He also repeated that those who don’t adhere to their quarantine plans could face fines or imprisonment.


He also added that the government continues to evaluate the ongoing ban on travel to and from the U.K. and says they will make a decision on whether or not it be extended. 


The Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, will hold a news conference Wednesday afternoon to provide more details regarding the COVID-19 pre-departure testing requirements for air passengers.


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