Financially speaking, who benefited most from the generous Canadian Emergency Benefit (CEP) that Justin Trudeau launched at the start of the coronavirus pandemic?
After analyzing the number of ECP recipients by age group of the working population, it is ultimately the oldest workers, namely those 65 and over, who come out on top.
In Quebec, there are 120,500 of them to have received the tempting benefit of $ 500 per week during the period from mid-March to the end of last September. These beneficiaries represent 68.5% of all workers aged 65 and over.
Workers in this age group earned a median income of about $ 250 per week in 2019, either in wages, salaries, commissions or net self-employment income.
This means that our workers aged 65 and over were able to benefit from a PKU ($ 500 / week) which turned out to be twice their median income!
And the PKU was even more “profitable” for those 65 and over who earned low income from employment or self-employment as low as $ 5,000 in 2019 (the equivalent of $ 96 / week) to be eligible for a PKU of $ 500 per week!
Who are we the second largest beneficiary of ECPs in Quebec?
Of the six age groups evaluated, it is the youngest workers, that is to say the 15 to 24 years, who are in second place.
Almost 6 in 10 workers aged 15 to 24 (58.8%) requested and received ECPs for some time.
Being a beneficiary of the PKU was also very beneficial for our younger workers who were victims of COVID-19.
Why am I saying this? Because the median weekly wage for working 15-24 year olds ranges from $ 216 (for part-time) to $ 384 (for full-time).
It does not take the head to Papineau (no reference to Justin Trudeau, the member for the riding of Papineau) to understand from his very face that it was more “paying” for 15 to 24 year olds to “stay” on the PCU to $ 500 per week instead of returning to the workforce to earn an income ranging from $ 216 to $ 384.
If many companies and businesses had difficulty finding labor when activities resumed from last June, we must point the finger at the generous PCU.
By adding the beneficiaries of the two age groups who have benefited greatly from the PKU compared to their usual income from work, they represent 23.7% of all 2 million Quebec recipients of the PKU.
Note that Quebec is no exception.
A PAN-CANADIAN PROBLEM
Across the country, the “oldest” and the “youngest” ECP beneficiaries total or almost the same proportion (23.5%) as in Quebec.
According to data compiled by the federal government, there are 488,120 beneficiaries aged “65 and over” who have cashed in the ECP and 1.6 million beneficiaries “under 25”.
For example, the PKU offered by the Trudeau government has allowed one in four workers eligible for the PKU to ultimately earn more than they normally earn.
This unacceptable “generosity” is due to the eligibility criteria for the PKU.
I remind you that it was enough to be at least 15 years old, to have stopped working due to COVID-19 and to have earned employment or self-employment income of at least $ 5,000 in 2019 or in the 12 months preceding the date of the request, to be eligible for the Canada Emergency Benefit.
Recipients could receive $ 500 per week, for a maximum of 28 weeks. For a total income of $ 14,000. And, in addition, for each 4-week ECP period (or $ 2,000 in total), beneficiaries could earn up to $ 1,000 in combined employment or self-employment income without being penalized for their ECP.
We agree that this federal generosity (offering a PKU greater than your salary) does not make any sense. Because, needless to say, it is all Canadian taxpayers who will have to foot the bill for the generous PCU.
A total bill of $ 81.6 billion, including $ 18.5 billion for the two million Quebec providers of the PCU.
||Beneficiaries / working population
||Median salary $ / week
||216 to 384
|65 and over
|65 and over
||8 899 170