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JUNE 1 INJURED WORKERS ACTIONS!

Dear community members,

SAWRO is endorsing the 37th Injured Worker’s Day Rally. The health & safety and workers’ compensation systems can cause real damage to individuals, families and public health.

Coronavirus has meant that workers’ safety and public health care in the news more. These are not new issues – but there is no time like the present to secure a safer and more just future. Join SAWRO and others from the community on the online rally on Monday, June 1, 2020 starting from 11:00 AM. You can join the rally from:

June 1st FACEBOOK POST

For more information, feel free to contact us!

Sincerely,

SAWRO Admin
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

Supplies and Food Programs

Dear Community Members,

As the pandemic continues, we realize that many are isolated at home and have limited access and capacity to secure food and basic necessities. If you require access to food and delivery, please refer to the following list of organizations and agencies that are providing free food and other supplies. All these programs are accessible regardless of income and immigration status.

  • Red Cross: Providing support partnership with the City of Toronto. If you reside in Toronto, are unable to access grocery stores or community food programs de to COVID-19 and/or are in isolation, and have no other option to secure food delivery from family or friends.
    Call 1-833-204-9952 on Monday- Friday between 8:30 am-4:30 pm to register.

food-hamper-promo-flyer_20_5_25-page-001

  • Scarborough Food Security Initiative:  Deliver emergency food and medication by volunteers to individuals and families in financial need and are self-isolation.
    Call 647-846-0300 or email ScarbCare@gmail.com. Register online to access emergency assistance.
  • Friendly Neighbourhood Hotline Operated by the University Health Network’s OpenLab to assist vulnerable seniors access groceries and other household essentials. Support is only provided to seniors living in low-income housing.
    Call 1-855-581-9580 or order online.
  • Canada Muslim Response Network: Coalition of Muslim civil society organizations to support vulnerable populations affected by COVID-19.
    Register online to access supports

There are many more organizations, agencies, and coalitions providing food access support to those who are in need during this pandemic, this list is just a few. We will continuously share information with community members as more information becomes available.

IF you need support accessing these services, feel free to contact us.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

Facebook Live Event COVID-19 Support for Students

Dear Community Members,

This is a reminder of our upcoming Facebook Live Event COVID-19 Support for Students on Saturday, May 30th at 4:00 PM. This online session will be hosted by SAWRO staff and will be delivered in Bangla and English who will provide information about COVID-19 economic supports for students, changes to programs supporting student employment, and how to access them. The presentation will be followed by a question and answer period for community members.

To participate in the session:
Click on the Facebook link provided below and follow updates about the event. If you wish to leave a question, feel free to post them or comment during the live stream
Call us at the number below to participate in the event:
647-558-0588 (Zoom Meeting ID: 876 8180 6131)

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SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com
www.sawro.org

Facebook Live Event: COVID-19 Support for Students

Dear Community Members,

This post is to notify that the previously announced Live Information Session on Supports for Students has been rescheduled. The event is now scheduled for Saturday, May 30, 3020 from 4:00 to 5:00 PM. We apologize for the inconvenience. We look forward to being with you in the following week.

COVID-19 FB Live Event Flyer (5)

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com
www.sawro.org

LIVE NOW: COVID-19 Economics Supports Presentation and Q&A

Dear community members,

SAWRO organized a live interactive session where community members can learn about available economic supports, how to access them, and engage with presenters with their questions.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment and/or call 647-558-0588 (meeting ID:854 8180 6131) See the link to view and participate in the session: https://www.facebook.com/SouthAsianWomensRightsOrganization/live/

Or

https://www.facebook.com/SouthAsianWomensRightsOrganization/videos/240545463895308/

Sincerely,

SAWRO

416-685-0701

sawro.office@gmail.com

How to access the LIVE COVID-19 Economic Support Info-Session on May 16!

Dear community members,

This is a reminder that SAWRO will be hosting a live and interactive information session on  Saturday, May 16th, 2020 at 4pm. SAWRO staff will be presenting important information about COVID-19 Economic Supports from the government and how to access these supports. We highly encourage you all to participate to get accessible information in Bangla and English. Here are some ways you can join!

Online – Through Facebook!
• Log into your personal Facebook Account
• Click on the event link to see the live online session. You can ask your question in the comment section while the event is streaming live (https://www.facebook.com/events/2642804659374560/)

Over the Phone:
• Dial the local number 647-558-0588 (this is a Zoom number)
• You will be asked for a meeting ID, enter 876 8180 6131
• You will be able to hear the presentation. You will be admitted to the meeting after the presentation for the question and answer period and will be able to ask questions directly

You can join both ways! The question and answer period will have a moderator. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us!

If you have additional questions or concerns on how to see the live stream, feel free to contact us.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com
www.sawro.org

COVID-19 FB Live Event Flyer

CESB Applications Update!

Dear Community Members,

The government has announced more details regarding the Canada Emergency Student Benefit application. The CESB benefit will provide students $1250 from May to August (must re-apply for each 4-week period). Applications open on Friday, May 15 at 6AM.

The following information can also be found on the Government of Canada Website: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/emergency-student-benefit.html

WHO CAN APPLY:

  • You have NOT applied or are receiving CERB or EI
  • You are a citizen, permanent resident, or protected person
  • You are studying in Canada or abroad
  • Post-secondary students who have been enrolled or have completed their studies in December 2019 or later from recognized post-secondary educational institutions
  • You completed or expect to complete highschool or highschool equivalency in 2020 and have applied for post-secondary education that starts before February 1, 2021
  • You meet ONE of the following criteria:
    • you are unable to work due to COVID-19
    • You are looking for but cannot find work due to COVID-19
    • you are currently working but your income from employment/self-employment is $1000 or less during the 4-week period you are applying for

You may be eligible for a top-up of $750 for your CESB benefits if:

  • You have a disability (check definition)
  • You have at least one child under the age fo 12 or other dependents

HOW TO APPLY:

  • If you have previously filed for a tax return, then apply through your CRA Individual Account or MyCRA account. Make sure you provide a direct deposit information.
  • If you have never filed for tax return, then call 1-800-959-8281 to register your SIN number with CRA. You will not be able to apply for the CESB  or set up direct deposit until you call!
  • Alternatively, you can apply by phone. You will need your SIN number and postal code to verify your identity. Call 1-800-959-8281 OR 1-800-959-2041.

If you have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com
www.sawro.org

New COVID-19 Aid for Seniors

Dear Community Members,

The government of Canada has announced today morning that they will be providing additional benefits to eligible senior citizens of Canada. The following benefits include:

  • one-time tax-free payment of $300 for seniors eligible for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension
  • an additional $200 for seniors eligible for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS)

They are also temporarily extending GIS and Allowance payments if the senior’s 2019 income information still requires assessment. Seniors should submit their 2019 income information no later than October 1st, 2020.

The government is also providing increased funding to support community organizations that offer projects to reduce the isolation of seniors and improve their quality of life through a social support network.

You can read the full extent of the PM’s announcement here: https://pm.gc.ca/en/news/news-releases/2020/05/12/prime-minister-announces-additional-support-canadian-seniors

If you have additional questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com
www.sawro.org

COVID-19 Economic Support | Facebook Live and Q&A

Dear Community Members,

SAWRO is organizing an online information session that will present information on recent COVID-19 Economic Supports provided by the government on Saturday, May 16th, 2020 from 4pm-5pm, through a Facebook Live event. The online live-stream will be hosted by SAWRO staff, who will present information about pandemic economic supports, and how to access these supports.  All of this information will be delivered in Bangla and English.

The presentation of information will be followed by a period of question and answer form the community members. If you wish to participate during this live online session:

  • Click on the facebook event link and follow the updates on the event page. If you wish to leave a question for the health professional, you can do so by making a post under the discussion section.
  • You can also call 647-558-0588 (meeting ID: 876 8180 6131) during the event to ask a question to te facilitators

Facebook Event Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/2642804659374560/

If you have additional questions or concerns, feel free to contact us. Additional details will follow soon.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

COVID-19 FB Live Event Flyer

CESB requires CRA Account!

Dear Community Members,

The applications for the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) benefit will open soon (most likely by the end of May). The federal government has already announced that the application will be made available through CRA.

If you have not already registered for a CRA Individual Account or a MyCRA account, it is advised you do so soon. You are required to have filed for your taxes in the previous year to make a CRA Individual Account or MyCRA Account. To open a CRA account, you will need your SIN number and 2018 tax return information. You will then be required to activate your account.

For individuals who have never filed for taxes, they can call 1-800-959-8281 to activate their SIN.

For more information about activating your account, feel free to refer to an earlier post: https://dwjobnet.wordpress.com/2020/03/23/reminders-economic-supports-and-health-numbers/

Or watch this video from the Canada Revenue Agency on what is required to make your MyCRA Account: https://twitter.com/CanRevAgency/status/1259196441966206977

An alternative method of application will be announced later (will likely be via telephone).

As more information becomes available, we will share it. If you have questions or concerns, feel free to contact us.

Best,

SAWRO Admin
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

COVID-19 Workplace Health & Safety and Tenants Rights Information Sheets

Dear Community Members,

We have gathered resources from our network regarding COVID-19 workplace health and safety and tenants rights. Click on the documents below to view.

  1. Frequently Asked COVID-19 Workplace Health and Safety
  2. What Tenants Needs to Know During the COVID-19 Pandemic

SAWRO Admin
416-686-9153, 647-857-9153
sawro.office@gmail.com
www.sawro.org

REMINDER: Re-apply for CERB for May

Dear Community Members,

This is a reminder that you must re-apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefits 4 weeks after your first application.  The criteria for the CERB application are:

  • You live in Canada and are atleast 15 years old
  • You earned a minimum of $5000 in your previous tax return OR in the last 12 months from employment income, self-employment, or maternity/parental benefits
  • You did not leave your job voluntarily and expect no income for the period

Additional criteria include:

  • You are not re-applying for CERB or receiving EI for the same eligibility period
  • IF YOU ARE RE-APPLYING: You continue to have no income for this qualifying period OR have earned a no more than $1000 from employment/self-employment
  • If you have received at least 1-week of  EI regular benefits since December 29, 2019 AND you have completed those benefits

Instructions on how to apply: 

CRA My Account: Login (using Sign-in Partner or CRA user ID/password), click Apply for CERB (at the top), confirm that you are eligible for the benefit, and confirm your direct deposit information. Payment will show up as a one-time direct deposit to your account within 3 days. (Screenshots below)

Phone: Call 1-800-959-2019 or 1-800-959-2041 and follow the phone prompts. Be ready with your SIN number, birth year, postal code, and confirm that you meet the eligibility criteria for the benefit.

If you require clarification and support, feel free to contact SAWRO.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

How to access the Live Health Information Session on May 2nd!

 

Dear community members,
This is a reminder that SAWRO will be hosting a live and interactive information session on  Saturday, May 2nd, 2020 at 4pm. We have knowledgeable internationally educated and trained health professionals who will be presenting important information about COVID-19. We highly encourage you all to participate to get accessible information in Bangla and English. Here are some ways you can join!

Online – Through Facebook!
• Log into your personal Facebook Account
• Click on the event link to see the live online session. You can ask your question in the comment section while the event is streaming live (https://www.facebook.com/events/589528141660952/)

Over the Phone:
• Dial the local number 647-558-0588 (this is a Zoom number)
• You will be asked for a meeting ID, enter 854 4034 4859
• You will be able to hear the presentation. You will be admitted to the meeting after the presentation for the question and answer period and will be able to ask questions directly

You can join both ways! The question and answer period will have a moderator. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us!

If you have additional questions or concerns on how to see the live stream, feel free to contact us.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

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COVID-19 Facebook Live and Q&A

Dear Community Members,

SAWRO is organizing an online health series that will present information on the recent COVID-19 pandemic on Saturday, May 2nd, 2020 from 4pm-5pm, through a Facebook Live event. The online live-stream will host internationally-trained health professionals who will present information about the pandemic, recommended health protection Emeasures, and important physical/mental health. They will also answer to frequently asked questions about COVID-19. All of this information will be delivered in Bangla and English.

The presentation of information will be followed by a period of question and answer form the community members. If you wish to participate during this live online session:

  • Click on the facebook event link and follow the updates on the event page. If you wish to leave a question for the health professional, you can do so by making a post under the discussion section.
  • You can also call 647-558-0588 (meeting ID: 854 3043 4859) during the event to ask a question to te facilitators

If you have additional questions or concerns, feel free to contact us. Additional details will follow soon.

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

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Announcement for Internationally Educated Health Professional (IEHP) Mobilization

Dear Community Members,

The World Education Services has announced updates regarding International Educated Health Professionals:

  • The Ontario government has launched a workforce matching portal to allow IEHP to identify themselves and enter their health profession and specialty (link to portal: https://healthcloudtrialmaster-15a4d-17117fe91a8.force.com/matchingportal/s/registerprofessionals?language=en_US)
  • HealthForceOntario is collecting information about internationally-education health professionals regarding their qualifications (link to the form: healthforceontario.ca/en/M4/Covid19IEHP)
  • The Ontario Long Term Care Association has launched a portal at Link2LTC and is recruiting for a range of roles (link to the portal: https://ltc.tazwiz.com/). They will be holding a webinar tomorrow Tuesday, April 21 at 2 pm for IEHPs on these opportunities.
  • The Government of Canada is calling for volunteers to assist with case and contact tracking, health system surge capacity, and case data collection and reporting (link to apply: https://emploisfp-psjobs.cfp-psc.gc.ca/psrs-srfp/applicant/page1800?toggleLanguage=en&poster=1437722)
  • The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario is announcing a Supervised Short duration Certificate of the Registration program. The physician must be granted a supervised appointment from either the hospital, a university or a psychiatric facility in Ontario. The letter of appointment (job offer) should include the dates the physician is needed and specify the high/urgent need. Physician credentials vary based on what’s acceptable to either the hospital or university but at minimum a Medical Degree is required. Residency is not always needed. The Medical Council of Canada examinations are not required. A physician should have practiced clinical medicine or graduated from medical school in the past 2 years. Please note that in order to apply, a confirmation of employment must be provided directly from the hospital to Inquiries@cpso.on.ca. (For more information, review the CPSO’s COVID-19 FAQs for physicians and registration requirements.)

For more information about the Ontario Long Term Care webinars, check the flyer below.

Sincerely,

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

 

Federal Financial Aid for Students

Dear Community Members,

The federal government has announced an additional $9 billion financial support for students and youth during the COVID-19 pandemic. These benefits are expected to provide support for up to 700,000 students across Canada.

They announced that it will:

  • Introduce the Canada Emergency Student Benefit — benefits of up to $1250 (or $1750 for students with dependents or disabilities) for students who don’t qualify for CERB
  • Introduce the Canada Student Service Grant — an incentive for students doing community service to help their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant will provide up to $5000 for their education in the upcoming fall term (September 2020)
  • Double the Canada Student Grants (a portion of OSAP) for all eligible students to up to $6000 for full-time students and up to $3,600 for part-time students for the school year of 2020-21
  • Extend expiring federal graduate research scholarships and post-doctoral fellowships
  • Removing the limit of 20 hours per week of work for international students

In addition to the additional financial supports, the federal government has announced that it will support the creation of 116,000 jobs for young adults and some changes to the Canadian Summer Jobs program.

The legislation will be introduced in the next few weeks. The application for new financial support programs and eligibility for those programs is yet to be announced.

For more information, feel free to check out the federal government’s websites:

If you have additional questions or concerns, feel free to contact us.

Sincerely,

SAWRO

416-686-0701

sawro.office@gmail.com

Update for OW/ODSP regarding CERB

Dear community members,

The Ontario government has confirmed that it will allow social assistance recipients on Ontario Works (OW) and Ontario Disabilities Support Program (ODSP) to keep some of the Canadian Emergency Response Benefits (CERB).

If you are an OW/ODSP recipients whose application has been accepted prior to March 1, 2020 and qualify for the CERB benefits, you can keep $1,100 on top of your regular benefits. If you recently applied (later than March 1, 2020),  the CERB amount will be deducted back dollar for dollar when assessing your benefits.

In addition to the recognition of the CERB benefits, OW and ODSP recipients can also request an additional $100/individual OR $200/family in emergency funds (must be requested to the caseworker). For more information, feel free to check out the Ministry of Children, Community, and Social Services website or the Toronto Star article: Ontario to allow people on social assistance to keep part of their emergency benefits

This is not a change to the CERB criteria. If you are interested and would like to know more about these changes, feel free to contact us.

Sincerely,

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

 

 

CoVID-19 International Medical Graduate (Anticipatory Recruitment)

Dear Community Members,

A member has shared information about a potential opportunity for those who are internationally trained medical professionals to work with the RedCross as a part of the emergency response unit.

This is an opportunity for those who practiced medicine abroad, passed the MCCQE1, NAC, and OSCE examination, and hold a valid medical license from any country. Please see the link for more information about this opportunity.

https://www.redcross.ca/about-us/jobs/opportunities-in-canada/covid-19-international-medical-graduate-anticipatory-recruitment

Sincerely,

SAWRO admin
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

 

 

CERB Expansion of Eligibility

Dear Community Members,

The federal government has announced some changes to eligibility for the Canadian Emergency Response Benefits (CERB). The changes to the criteria are:

  • Allow people to earn up to $1000 while collecting CERB (meaning that you can work while you receive CERB with a maximum income of $1000 – removes the previous condition that you cannot have any income)
  • Extend CERB for those who finished their EI regular benefits since January 1 and are unable to find a job or return to work because of COVID-19 (If your EI regular benefits have ended as of January 1, 2020, then you can apply for CERB)
  • Extend CERB to seasonal workers who have exhausted their EI regular benefits and are unable to go back to work due to COVID-19

These changes are outlined on the website (https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/04/expanding-access-to-the-canada-emergency-response-benefit-and-proposing-a-new-wage-boost-for-essential-workers.html).

While there needs to be universal health and economic measures, these expansions will allow for more people to access economic supports. We strongly encourage community members to review the eligibility and apply for CERB if you are experiencing financial impact because of COVID-19. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact SAWRO.

Sincerely,

SAWRO
416-686-0701
sawro.office@gmail.com

 

 

COVID-19: Universal health and economic security measures required!

Dear Community,

SAWRO continues to support community members to access the health and economic emergency measures put in place by the government. While this has supported families in the community, we are also aware of the fact that many families do not meet the criteria and as a result excluded from accessing economic supports. Please read our statement below on the need for universal measures that are accessible to everyone (or visit the website to read the statement). We need to ensure that everyone in society, regardless of their situation, can participate in physical distancing and other health measures to keep themself and others in the community safe during the pandemic.


The experience of other countries during the COVID-19 pandemic has made very clear what government response should be:

  • organize mandatory and comprehensive containment and isolation measures;
  • facilitate compliance by providing universal livelihood supports to all working people.

In Canada governments at all levels are not following this universal approach. Instead they have been rolling out a patchwork of half-measures full of gaps. When people fall through the cracks in this system, the coronavirus also falls through enabling it to spread and cause greater harm.

This analysis is based on the hundreds of phone/email contacts SAWRO workers have made with the community’s families over the past few days.  People feel their families are being left to fend for themselves in the covid-19 crisis. They are excluded by the narrowness and shallowness of both government health security measures and economic security programs.

This exclusion is a result of government failing to take into account of the situation of workers in the low-paid precarious job sectors where many community people—especially immigrant women—are working.  Government is neither recognizing nor responding to the vulnerabilities of workers employed through precarious work arrangements. People facing great health security challenges and severe threat to their livelihoods are being given very little support.

The failure of government to organize mandatory and comprehensive covid-19 containment and isolation measures has resulted in exposure of precarious workers at their workplaces and on public transit commuting to work. In Ontario the government list of “essential businesses” is far too expansive and  the regulation of workplace protections far too voluntary. They leave employers in many non-crucial enterprises to do as they please.

Numerous reports have been received about predatory employers refusing to follow social distancing and hygiene protocols in the workplace and to provide required personal protective equipment. They are also bullying and intimidating workers who request leave to self-isolate, to care for school age children or to care for seniors. Employers are threatening to manipulate worker access to EI or Canada Emergency Relief Benefit if they leave the job.

Individual workers with insecure employment relationships have difficulty taking protective action—government action is needed:

  • the number of businesses declared “essential” should be severely restricted to enterprises with crucial pandemic response roles
  • for crucial workplaces which remain open, mandatory protective health measures should be established and robustly enforced
  • power to decide who should have leave from work to self-isolate, care for young children or other family members should be taken entirely out of the hands of employers
  • transportation to work for crucial workers—which is compliant with social distancing guidelines—must be provided

A similar, more universal approach needs to be taken in government covid-19 emergency livelihood supports.  Many community people are fully attached to the work force and are losing earned income as result of the pandemic but are excluded from both extended EI benefits and the Canada Emergency Relief Benefit (CERB) program. The only employment available to them are jobs as staffing agency workers, as on call workers, as irregularly scheduled workers in retail and fast food and as misclassified “independent” contractors. Because of their insecure employment, low wages and irregular income they cannot meet the eligibility criteria of these programs—despite the devastating impact the pandemic is having on their earned incomes.

The exclusionary criteria affecting community working people, especially immigrant women include:

  • $5,000 minimum earning requirement for CERB payments
  • requirement that no income is received in qualifying periods
  • requirement that applicant was not unemployed at time of pandemic outbreak
  • exclusion for voluntarily leaving employment

There are multiple ways precariously employed workers can be entangled in these exclusions and not receive emergency benefits. They are left scrambling around looking for work and being forced to accept work in unhealthy situations—instead of focussing on complying with emergency health measures.

The only solution to this problem is government providing livelihood support payments universally available to all working people, regardless of their labour market position. This approach would recognize and respond to  the vulnerabilities of precariously employed workers. It would also recognize  that during the pandemic crisis ensuring the health  and economic security of each individual is necessary for the health and economic security of all.