Workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic will be able to apply May 1st for $1,000 of temporary relief through the B.C. Emergency Benefit for Workers (BCEBW).

A one-time, tax-free payment, the $1,000 from the BCEBW is for all British Columbian workers impacted by the pandemic. Most people eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) will also be eligible for the BCEBW.

“This benefit is further help for British Columbians who are worried about paying their bills and making ends meet during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Carole James, Minister of Finance. “During these uncertain times, we want to get through this together by helping displaced workers support themselves and their families.”

In order to be eligible for the BCEBW, people must:

  • Have been a resident of British Columbia on March 15, 2020;
  • Meet the eligibility requirements for the CERB;
  • Have been approved for the CERB, even if they have not received a benefit yet;
  • Be at least 15 years old on the date of application;
  • Have filed, or agree to file, a 2019 B.C. income tax return; and
  • Not be receiving provincial income assistance or disability assistance.

Applications can be made online, any time starting May 1st.

More: BCEBW Application Portal (B.C. Government)

Also beginning May 1st, people can phone 778-309-4630 or 1-855-955-3545 toll-free in B.C. for general support or questions from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm (MT) Monday to Friday. Applications over the phone will begin May 4th.

“Payments will start to go out within days of application,” said the B.C. Government. “While there may be minor delays during the initial surge, government staff will be working to quickly process payments.”