Posted on Sep 4, 2020


EDMONTON – Jason Kenney must stop stalling and release a plan to support essential frontline workers with wage top-ups, demands the Alberta NDP Caucus. 

As we approach Labour Day the UCP government has yet to release a plan on who will qualify for federal wage top-ups or when essential front line workers will be compensated for taking on additional risk by working throughout the pandemic. The $3 billion commitment by Ottawa was first announced in May.

“In other provinces, this money has already gone out the door to support essential workers. There is no excuse for this delay by Jason Kenney and the UCP,” said NDP Labour Critic Christina Gray. “We are calling on Jason Kenney and the UCP to get that money into the hands of the hardworking people that are keeping our province running during a pandemic.”

The federal funding was distributed to provinces to cover new programs giving extra pay to essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as health-care workers, emergency responders, correctional officers, social workers, and others. 

The federal government left it up to the provinces to propose which workers should be paid extra, and how much. British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and the Maritime provinces have all launched programs, with some providing an extra $4 per hour to critical workers.

When asked by CBC for details of the funding received so far, the UCP refused to reveal how much it has received or how much the province intends to contribute