A quarter of Quebecers have used the CERB

About 1.8 million Quebecers claimed the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) in 2020, according to data released this week by Statistics Canada.

• Also read: Nearly 20.7 million Canadians received benefits from COVID-19

Quebec applicants received an average of $7,940, which is nearly 16 weeks.

“Quebec has had more health restrictions, which has impacted employment and hours worked,” said Simon Savard, senior economist at the Institut du Québec (IDQ).

Mr. Savard is also not surprised to see that less affluent communities have more residents who have received government assistance.

“The economic downturn has hit low-wage workers disproportionately because those with higher wages work in jobs that often allow them to work remotely. »

As for Gatineau, Lévis, and Québec, the large number of officers residing there partly explains why these cities have rarely resorted to emergency assistance.

Quebec is one of the leading packs in the country

The province ranks second nationally in terms of the proportion of its population that has benefited from CERB, just behind Alberta. However, Quebecers who used the program received less money than residents of 8 of the 10 provinces.

The PCU in brief

Announced by the Trudeau government on March 25, 2020

  • For Canadians who have lost their job, are in quarantine or are caring for someone who is ill due to COVID-19
  • Reduction of $500 per week for a maximum of 28 weeks
  • To qualify, you must have earned at least $5,000 in income in 2019

Quebec is one of the leading packs in the country

The province ranks second nationally in terms of the proportion of its population that has benefited from CERB, just behind Alberta. However, Quebecers who used the program received less money than residents of 8 of the 10 provinces.


► Percentage of Quebecers who have used CERB: 26% of 15+

► Average amount received in the province: $7940

► CERB total in Quebec: $14.4 billion

Rate of providers in the 10 most populous cities

  • Montreal: 29%
  • Lava: 29%
  • Terrebonne: 29%
  • Longueuil: 26%
  • Sherbrooke: 26%
  • Three Rivers: 25%
  • Quebec: 24%
  • Levi’s: 24%
  • Saguenay: 23%
  • Gatineau: 23%

LAVAL AND SAINT-LIN AT THE LEADER’S HEAD

The metropolitan area has used the CERB the most. Laval is the city that has used the program the most, followed by Montreal, Terrebonne and Longueuil.

In smaller communes (10,000 or more inhabitants), Saint-Lin-Laurentides (36%) comes first, while Sainte-Sophie (34%) and Mont-Tremblant (33%) come in second and third.

Among those who have used the program least, Westmount (17%) comes first, followed by Saint-Lambert (18%) and Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures (19%).

More men than women received it

Quebec women used emergency aid less often than their male counterparts. In fact, 53% of CERB applicants are men, compared to 47% women. On the other hand, women using the program received, on average, a larger amount than men. In all other provinces of Canada, the reverse is the case: more women than men have applied for the CERB.


millions for students

Expelled from the PCU, the students were eligible for the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (PCUE), which amounted to $1,250 for four weeks. About 150,000 Quebecers had access to it for a total of $581 million. Quebecers used it at a lower rate than the Canadian average.

  • Quebecers who have used the CESB: 149 215
  • Total cost : $581 million

Especially for those under 55

Not surprisingly, working-age Quebecers were more likely to take advantage of the federal government’s emergency program. About two-thirds of the population aged 15-54 have used the PCU, compared to 27% for those aged 55-64 and 8.5% for those aged 65 and over. Although fewer seniors received it, they still received 16% more than the Quebec average.

Percentage of PKU by Age Group

  • From 15 to 24 years: 33%
  • From 25 to 54 years: 33%
  • From 55 to 64 years: 27%
  • 65 and older: 9%

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