Manitoba’s premier says he still believes the federal government should be providing a paid sick leave program after Ontario announced Thursday that it would do so for its workers.
Premier Brian Pallister says he was hoping to see a paid sick leave program in the recent federal budget but was disappointed when it didn’t appear.
“The fact that they didn’t use the opportunity to have national paid sick leave really disturbs me,” he said.
“(B.C.) Premier (John) Horgan and I worked very, very hard to get all the premiers on side … and we got every premier to agree that this was something we needed to do; we had to develop a plan to do it.”
There was no mention of any changes to the federal Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB), which pays $500 per week ($450 after taxes) for up to four weeks for anyone required to quarantine because of COVID-19.
Pallister said he hopes the prime minister will talk about this in the coming days.
“I’m not suggesting that everyone should make money off being sick, that’s not what I mean … but I do think a national sick leave program is the right solution.”
Thursday, Ontario Premier Doug Ford promised a paid sick leave program for his province’s workers but was short on details.
Ford said people forced into quarantine should not have to worry about their jobs or income, while speaking from his own self-isolation on Thursday after a member of his staff tested positive for COVID-19.
He said the province is now working on a solution because the federal government didn’t expand its own policy. However, when pressed on when further details would be released, Ford would not confirm a date.
– With files from Jessica Patton
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