Today, Minister Lecce, Minister Bethlenfalvy, and MPP Park announced that our government is providing $980 million in direct payments to parents, as part of the expanded Ontario COVID-19 Child Benefit, along with new details on eligibility and timing. This is in addition to $868 million in two payments the government has already provided to support parents through the original Support for Learners and Support for Families Programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new program doubles the direct one-time funding to parents to $400 per child and $500 for a child with special needs.
Starting April 26, the payments will be delivered automatically to parents who received previous Support for Learners payments. Parents who did not apply for or did not receive the Support for Learners payment will be able to submit an application for the new Ontario COVID-19 Child Benefit. Applications will open on May 3 and close on May 17. The application will be available at Ontario.ca/covid-19childbenefit on that date.
- Our aim, during these extraordinarily challenging times, is to continue supporting those impacted hardest by the COVID-19 outbreak — Ontario families.
- We are focused on what matters most: student success and well-being in the classroom and beyond, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- COVID-19 has imposed many costs on families in this province, which is why, for the third time, we are providing financial support by placing funds directly in the pockets of working parents.
- Through the COVID-19 Child Benefit, the government is providing $980 million in direct payments to parents.
- Our government is providing one-time funding of $400 for children and youth aged 0-Grade 12 and $500 for children and youth up to age 21 with special needs.
- The program will be providing real and meaningful financial relief for families to help offset additional learning costs, whether their children attend school in person, online or a mix of both, with support totaling $980 million.
- This investment in families builds on the over $860 million provided to parents since the start of the pandemic through the original Support for Learners and Support for Families Program. For example, an Ontario family with three children, including one with special needs, would receive $2600 this past year to help cover the costs of an accessible workspace and technology to enable learning online.
- In total, since the start of the pandemic, the government has provided $1.8 billion in direct support to parents across the province.
- Too many parents tell me the high cost of child care will keep them out of the workforce.
- Our government is making child care more affordable and helping parents get back into the workforce by proposing a 20 per cent enhancement of the CARE tax credit for 2021 that would help parents with the cost of child care. This would increase support from $1,250 to $1,500, on average, providing about $75 million in additional support for the child care expenses of over 300,000 families.
- We remain committed to helping parents and families with the unprecedented challenges they are facing this school year.