Prime Minister Announces Support for Vulnerable Canadians Affected by COVID-19 (Highlights)

Prime Minister announces support for vulnerable Canadians affected by COVID‑19

Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

Parts of the Plan of Special Interest to Seniors:

  1. “Provide immediate essential services to Canadian seniors impacted by COVID-19. The Government of Canada will contribute $9 million through United Way Canada for local organizations to support practical services to Canadian seniors. These services could include the delivery of groceries, medications, or other needed items, or personal outreach to assess individuals’ needs and connect them to community supports.”
  2. “We are deferring the filing due date for the 2019 tax returns of individuals.
    For individuals (other than trusts), the return filing due date will be deferred until June 1, 2020.
    We will also allow any new income tax balances due, or instalments, to be deferred until after August 31, 2020 without incurring interest or penalties.”
  3. “Mortgage support
    Canadian banks have committed to work with their customers on a case-by-case basis to find solutions to help them manage hardships caused by COVID-19. Canadians who are impacted by COVID-19 and experiencing financial hardship as a result should contact their financial institution regarding flexibility for a mortgage deferral. This allows flexibility to be available − when needed − to those who need it the most.”
  4. Enhancing the Reaching Home initiative
    “We continue to support people experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 outbreak by providing $157.5 million to the Reaching Home initiative.The funding could be used for a range of needs such as purchasing beds and physical barriers for social distancing and securing accommodation to reduce overcrowding in shelters.”
  5. “Reduced minimum withdrawals for Registered Retirement Income Funds
    We are reducing the required minimum withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) by 25% for 2020.”

The following are also good sources of information:

New Helpline for Seniors Living On Their Own Announced Today!

If you are a senior living on your own – and that means not in long-term care – and you need information on how to access help or assistance there is a new hotline number to call.   Seniors are still able to access HandiDart to get around but two taxi companies in the City have ceased operations for The Duration.  Some seniors may be wondering how they will get around.

As of today, seniors living on their alone or with a partner can call 211 for help or for information leading to help.  That’s 211.

Help with chores, help with medical issues, help getting groceries in, and what kinds of assistance there is available to you or to a partner.

This just in today.

If you are a senior reading this webpage, you can access the above number – 211 – for help.  You do not need to be a Liberal!

Message to Everyone from Angela Chapman, VGH-UBC Hospital Foundation

As you are no doubt aware, COVID-19 is a topic currently impacting us all in one way or another. Protecting our communities is a shared responsibility at a time like this. While the threat to British Columbians remains low, the very idea of an outbreak can feel stressful.

Consulting a reliable source of information can be re-assuring, and we recommend you stay up-to-date with the latest news from Vancouver Coastal Health. Here are some things you can do to support the well-being of yourself and others during this time:

  • Take care of your body! Take deep breaths, stretch or meditate. Continue to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly and get plenty of sleep.
  • Avoid excessive exposure to social media or sensational coverage. While being informed is important, it can be detrimental to your mental health to constantly take in stressful information. Consider ways to find balance with activities you normally enjoy.
  • Stay connected with loved ones and continue to maintain healthy relationships.

Fear and anxiety about a disease may feel overwhelming at times. By trusting the facts, sticking with the latest protocols, looking out for one another, and practicing good mental health habits, we can protect ourselves and our communities.

Take care of yourself and others,

Angela Chapman.


How to protect yourself from financial elder abuse.

We all know someone to whom this has happened.  Financial abuse as an elder is definitely something to be worried about.  Even if we hate to think of those we love as untrustworthy, money can be an irresistible temptation for some.  Below is an article from the CBC website which is short but to the point.