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CAUT calls on the federal government to extend emergency wage subsidy support to universities and colleges

(Ottawa – June 10, 2020) In recommendations presented to the federal government, the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) is calling on Ottawa to allow universities and colleges to access the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS).

“Universities and colleges, like other organizations, need financial support to retain and pay employees during the COVID-19 pandemic,” says CAUT Executive Director David Robinson. “Academics and staff are taking urgent steps to continue to conduct research and provide education. This vital work will be significantly hampered if institutions cannot retain employees and maintain operations throughout this crisis.”

Whereas private educational institutions are eligible for the federal wage subsidy program, public universities and colleges are not. CAUT is recommending that the government extend eligibility for the CEWS to universities and colleges, and extend the timelines.

“We appreciate the government’s efforts to improve its wage and income support programs,” Robinson adds. “But there are still gaps that need to be closed.”