Bloc Québécois to support Liberal bill expanding, extending coronavirus measures

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OTTAWA — The Bloc Québécois says it’ll support a bill to extend the federal emergency wage subsidy and make payments to people with disabilities to help with COVID-19 costs when the House of Commons meets on Monday.

In a statement, party House leader Alain Therrien said the measures proposed by the Liberal government are in keeping with demands the Bloc has made.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau said Friday the Liberals want to give wage supports to a wider range of businesses.

Read more: Liberals seek to recall House of Commons to pass more coronavirus measures

He said that should allow them to operate with more confidence in the pandemic even if trade is slow, but said he will ramp those supports down quickly through the autumn.

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The payments of up to $ 600 to people with disabilities to help with increased costs for things like prescriptions and deliveries were included in a bill the Liberals couldn’t get any other party to vote for in June.

The Bloc’s support means the new bill is all but certain to pass.

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Therrien’s statement says the Bloc would also have liked to see an end to the $ 500-a-week Canada Emergency Response Benefit and for political parties to give up the wage subsidy, but it won’t let that stand in the way of measures his party supports.

Read more: Finance minister reveals changes to COVID-19 wage subsidy program

The Speaker of the House of Commons sent out formal notice of the Commons sitting on Monday at mid-day Saturday.

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