Seniors will be receiving up to $500 in COVID-19 emergency aid in July

In his daily address to Canadians, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that seniors in Canada can expect COVID-19 emergency aid payments of up to $500 starting July 6, 2020.

As seniors continue to face higher costs for groceries, transportation and prescriptions for medication due to the coronavirus pandemic, the newly announced emergency aid is said to help offset these increased costs of living. 

Seniors who have qualified for Old Age Security (OAS) will be eligible for a one-time tax-free payment of $300, with those eligible for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) will be receiving $200. 

Seniors who qualify for both OAS and GIS will be receiving $500. 

The estimated cost for the new emergency aid for seniors is around $2.5 billion and is expected to help at least 6.7 million older Canadians. 

In the latest short-term model from Health Canada, the forecasted number of COVID-19 related deaths in the country could rise to 7,700 to 9,400 deaths by June 15. Additionally, the number of cases could grow to between 97,990 and 107,454 cases.

The report also found that long-term care and seniors homes continue to remain particularly vulnerable to the pandemic, with an estimate of 82 percent of COVID-19 deaths in Canada coming from this vulnerable area. 

Acknowledging the hardships and difficulties seniors are facing amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stated that “this is the new normal for many of them, at least for a little while”. 

“Even as we start to reopen parts of the economy, many seniors will have to stay home for longer to protect their health. And that’s really weighing on them.”

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