Yukon Essential Workers Income Support Program

The Yukon Essential Workers Income Support Program provides temporary financial support for lower-income workers for the delivery of essential services during COVID-19. 

Extension

The Yukon Essential Workers Income Support Program has been extended for an additional 16 weeks per worker between October 15, 2020, and February 15, 2021.

Program phases

There are two phases to the Yukon Essential Workers Income Support Program: 

  1. Phase 1, March 15, 2020 to October 3, 2020; and
  2. Phase 2, October 15, 2020 to February 15, 2021.

Employees that were previously enrolled by their employers in Phase 1 are eligible for an additional 16 weeks of support in Phase 2. Employers do not need to have participated in Phase 1 to participate in Phase 2.  Applications for Phase 1 will continue to be accepted. 

Who can apply?

This program is open to:

  • businesses, non-government organizations or governments; 
  • community societies or associations whose operations have been identified as critical or essential and that can apply for their eligible workers; and
  • employers accessing the Temporary Wage Subsidy.

A Yukon organization or a community society or association that employs essential workers who meet the income threshold can apply on behalf of their workers.

All employers must comply with the Employment Standards Act. Employers with staff in the Yukon Nominee Program must also comply with all Yukon Nominee Program terms and conditions.

Who cannot apply?

This program is not available to workers who have accessed the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) during the same period in which they're applying for the Yukon Essential Workers Income Support Program. 

Criteria

A Yukon business means a business that meets 3 of the following criteria:

  • Has a resident agent, warehouse, office or place of business in Yukon;
  • is subject to the Yukon Income Tax Act;
  • is registered under the Business Corporations Act or the Partnership and Business Name Act, where applicable; and
  • has a valid municipal business licence, where applicable.

A community society or association means organizations that:

  • are registered societies under the Yukon Societies Act and are in good standing; and
  • are based in the community.

Eligibility

In order to be eligible for this program a worker must:

  • provide a critical or essential service, regardless of whether they're a full-time or part-time employee; and,
  • earn less than $20.00 per hour.

This program applies to all Yukon workers providing essential and critical services listed in Annexes 1 and 2 of the Yukon government’s Guidelines for the delivery of critical and essential services (as of July 13, 2020) and any subsequent additions.

Wage premiums (for example, increased pay for working evenings and weekends) are considered to be part of the employee's hourly wage and need to be accounted for in the required documents listed below.

What will employers receive?

Employers will be compensated $50 in phase 1 and $100 in phase 2 for each registered essential worker to help with the employer portion of both Canada Pension Plan contributions and Employment Insurance premiums.

How much can workers receive?

Workers will receive the lesser of: 

  • a top-up of either $4 an hour, for up to 40 hours a week; or
  • an amount that brings their wage to $20 an hour, for up to 40 hours a week

The program will cover a maximum of 16 consecutive weeks of regular worked hours for each essential worker between October 15, 2020, and February 15, 2021. This does not include overtime, vacation, sick or non-worked statutory pay hours.

Employers have the flexibility to decide on the 16 consecutive weeks for the periods March 15, 2020 to October 3, 2020 and October 15, 2020 to February 15, 2021.

The employer can select a different 16-week period for each employee. However, each employee must have a consecutive 16-week period. Paid or unpaid employee leave during the enrolment period will not constitute a break in eligibility under this program.

Other considerations

  • Employers must comply with the Employment Standards Act.
  • Employers with staff in the Yukon Nominee Program must comply with all Yukon Nominee Program terms and conditions.
  • This subsidy amount must not be used as part of CEWS.
  • Program period cannot exceed 16 weeks in each phase.
  • Program hours cannot exceed 640 hours in each phase.
  • The subsidy is considered taxable income.
  • Yukon income support amount must be recorded as a separate pay category on the paystubs.

Application deadline

The deadline to apply for this program is March 10, 2021. Employers should apply to our office prior to paying their staff the top-up. 

Required documents for applying

  • A completed and signed application form with the original signature page.
  • A completed client worksheet Excel spreadsheet for Phase 1 or Phase 2.
  • For businesses, documentation showing that the applicant is an eligible Yukon business dated before March 1, 2020. For example, a utility bill showing the business’s name and address, registration from Corporate Affairs dated before March 1, 2020, or a valid business licence. 
  • For societies and associations, a copy of their registration.
  • Copies of the most recent pay stubs, for all employees in the application, covering the dates and proof of wages paid. Yukon income support amountmust be recorded as a separate pay category on the paystub.

How to apply

  1. Download and complete the employee agreement form for Phase 1 or Phase 2 (you will need it for step 2). 
  2. Download and complete the online application form for Phase 1 of Phase 2.
Contact: 

If you have questions, email ecdev@gov.yk.ca or phone 867-456-3803, toll free in Yukon 1-800-661-0408, extension 3803