Member Assists: COVID-19
Please see below for an excerpt from our April 2020 insideAESES newsletter:
Can You Tell Me? What Supports are Available to me During the COVID-19 Outbreak?
In light of the COVID-19 outbreak, many people are experiencing frustration, anxiety, and confusion on how to handle things. These are unprecedented times and everyone is trying to find their way through this uncharted territory. AESES is here to help guide you to many different kinds of support that you might need during this time.
Thus far, the Government of Canada has extended a number of economic benefits, although individual eligibility may vary. These benefits include items such as:
- Increased Canada Child Benefit (for those who are eligible)
- Increased Goods and Services Tax Credit (for those who are eligible)
- Extra time for filing income taxes
- Mortgage Support
- Updated Canada Emergency Response Benefit
- Moratorium on repayment of Canada Student Loans
- Employment Insurance one week waiting period waived for Sick Leave benefits (for people who do not have sick leave available through work)
Some of these benefits have not taken effect yet. For example, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and the Canada Child Benefit should become available in April and May, respectively.
For more information on the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, please refer to the website www.canada.ca.
Mental Health Support
Both Universities have mental health supports available to all staff. At The University of Winnipeg, support is available to eligible employees through Blue Cross’ Employee and Family Assistance Plan (EFAP). At the University of Manitoba, support is available through Shepell’s Employee and Family Assistance Plan (EFAP).
At UW, access MB Blue Cross EFAP via:
Mobile app: mybluecross mobile
At UM, access Shepell via:
Mobile app: My EAP
Additionally, the Anxiety Disorders Association of Manitoba (ADAM) also has a support line available. When calling, you will be asked to leave your name and phone number, and a representative will contact you as soon as possible. The service is available at the following times on weekdays from 9 AM-9 PM and on weekends from 10 AM-4 PM. The number to call is 204-925-0040. You can also visit their webpage for more information at www.adam.mb.ca.
Are you unable to leave your residence during this time to access everyday items such as groceries and prescriptions? Conversely, are you healthy and able to leave your residence to help others? Help Next Door MB is a way to get and give support. This service operates on the principle of “neighbours helping neighbours” and it offers to connect volunteers with people unable to leave their home due to self-isolation, sickness, and compromised immune systems. Visit www.helpnextdoormb.ca for more information on this free service.
Have you recently been laid off? The Community Unemployed Help Centre provides information, assistance, advice, and representation to individuals dealing with the federal government’s Employment Insurance. They can help those affected individuals navigate through the process of applying for Employment Insurance. The service is available free of charge and can be accessed via phone at 204-942-6556 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit www.cuhc.mb.ca for more information.
Ongoing Informational Support
If you’re looking for more information on COVID-19, the Province of Manitoba government website provides informational updates and resources for Manitobans. Please visit www.gov.mb.ca for provincial government updates.
Additionally, both Universities have webpages dedicated to communicating updates on COVID-19, as it relates to each employer. At UW, visit www.uwinnipeg.ca/covid-19 for current information. At UM, visit www.umanitoba.ca/coronavirus for ongoing messaging from the University.
Finally, AESES is also committed to providing continuous updates to our members. Please bookmark our page www.aeses.ca/covid-19-info-updates to follow us for relevant information.
The AESES Business Office is currently closed in order to respect physical distancing recommendations set out by the government. That doesn’t mean we are unavailable! Although we are not meeting in-person to provide support to our members at the moment, the office remains operational via phone and email during normal business hours. If you have any questions at all during this time, please reach out to us via phone at 204-949-5200 to leave a message for a call back, or by email at email@example.com.