Manitoba boosts back-to-work wage subsidies
Manitoba employers can now double the number of workers they can hire or rehire under the government’s Back to Work wage subsidy program, from 10 to 20 full- or part-time employees.
The subsidy for employers is also doubling, from a maximum of $50,000 to $100,000.
“The Back to Work Manitoba Initiative is a key component as we continue to reopen our communities and safely restart our recovery,” says Premier Brian Pallister. “Nearly 40,000 Manitobans are looking to get back to work and back up on their feet. To meet additional demand and support employers to hire and bring back more staff, we are doubling the number of employees eligible for a wage subsidy.”
The government has received applications from 445 employers for 2,429 employees and given out more than $12 million in financial supports as of Aug. 25. Nearly 40 per cent of employers accessing wage subsidies have applied for maximum 10 employees. In the restaurant and hospitality industry, almost two-thirds of applicants have maximized their subsidy for 10 hires.
The program is open to applicants of the Summer Student Recovery Jobs program and Back to Work This Summer Program to make any additional hires. However, positions already receiving funding through other federal or provincial government programs are ineligible.
“As we learn to live with COVID-19, our government continues to look for safe opportunities to get Manitobans back to work,” says Pallister. “Many businesses are adapting and finding ways to operate safely and offer services that Manitobans rely on, and we want to support them as they rebuild to pre-pandemic staffing levels.”
The application deadline is Oct. 1. Employers will be required to provide proof of payment of wages by Jan. 4, 2021.
In July, the province announced that under the $120-million Risk Recognition Recognition Program, a total of 78,442 frontline workers would each receive $1,530. However, one of the largest unions in Manitoba was unhappy with the provincial government’s changes.