Youth & Young Adults - MCFD Response to COVID-19
If you suspect you are ill as a result of COVID-19, please contact your health care provider or call 811 or 711 for those who are deaf/hard of hearing.
Last Updated: May 13, 2020
If you become ill with COVID-19, please report it to your social worker and call Provincial Centralized Screening at 1-800-663-9122
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) is working to ensure that youth and young adults do not encounter additional barriers to prevent them from receiving the services and supports they need.
On this page:
- MCFD has new emergency measures in place.
- Youth in foster care, out of care placements and contracted residential agencies will be able to stay where they are past their 19th birthday, available until June 30, 2020.*
- Youth on Independent Living Agreements and Youth Agreements will receive monthly living expenses past their 19th birthday, available until June 30, 2020.*
- Youth who are eligible for services through Community Living BC (CLBC) will be supported to transition on their 19th birthday. In an extreme situation if this transition is not possible due to COVID-19 related complications / risks, MCFD will support young adults to remain in their existing placement. MCFD and CLBC will continue to collaborate and support young adults on a case by case basis.
- The ministry has developed emergency measures regarding the 48 month time limit on the Agreements with Young Adults Program. The intention of these measures is to prevent young adults currently on AYA from having to draw down from their 48 month time limit of AYA support due to any program interruptions or pauses, or the inability to find employment during a natural program break, because of COVID-19. This change is also intended to prevent those who will turn 27 years old from becoming ineligible for AYA if they are unable to complete their program before their 27th birthday as a result of the pandemic.
If you are a young adult currently accessing the AYA program and you believe the circumstances listed above have applied to you since March 17, 2020 please contact your MCFD or DAA social worker for more information.*
- A new temporary Life Skills option is available prior to June 30, 2020 for youth to access AYA. This includes expansion of program eligibility to a wider range of existing programs online and in communities as well as decreasing the number of required hours of participation per week. Cultural programs are also now included under the AYA life-skills program policy.
*Currently, these measures are available until June 30th, however, the ministry will continue to re-evaluate its measures based on the advice of the Provincial Health Officer.
- Employment Insurance (EI): eligible claims can be submitted today. No one-week waiting period if you're on imposed quarantine and there is no medical certificate needed for EI sickness benefits.
- BC Hydro Customer Crisis Fund provides grants up to $600 if you've experienced job loss, illness or lost wages due to COVID-19.
- BC Hydro COVID-19 Relief Fund provides three months of bill credit based on your average consumption if you or your spouse/partner have stopped working due to COVID-19.
- The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) $2,000 per month (for up to 4 months) for workers who are:
- sick, quarantined, or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19
- working parents who must stay home without pay to care for sick children or for daycare & school closures
- employed workers not being paid because of lack of work
- wage earners & self-employed individuals, including contract workers, not eligible for EI
- The B.C. Emergency Benefit for Workers, a one-time $1,000 payment if you lost income because of COVID-19 for B.C. residents receiving federal Employment Insurance or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.
- Evictions in BC are halted. Existing and new evictions by landlords are halted. If there is a health and safety concern, landlords must apply to the residential tenancy board to evict.
- New annual rent increases are frozen during the state of emergency.
- Landlords are prohibited from accessing rental units without the consent of the tenant except in exceptional cases where it is needed to protect health and safety or to prevent undue damage to the unit.
- Landlords are allowed to restrict the use of common areas by tenants and guests.
- Temporary rent supplement of up to $500 for renters impacted by COVID-19 that do not qualify for existing rental assistance programs. Rent will be paid directly to landlords. Tenants can apply through BCHousing.
- Personal Income tax returns and payments filing is deferred to June 1, 2020; payments are deferred until after August 31, 2020. File soon to ensure your entitlements for the GST credit or the Canada Child Benefit.
- The Goods and Services Tax Credit (GSTC) will have a one-time special payment for individuals who already receive this credit in early May 2020. The average boost will be approx. $400 (single) and $600 couples.
- The Climate Action Tax Credit (CATC) will have a one-time enhancement that will be paid in July 2020 for moderate to low-income families.
- Canada Child Benefit (CCB) will increase the maximum annual payment amounts, only for the 2019-20 benefit year families will receive an extra $300 per child as part of their May payment.
- ICBC customers on a monthly Autoplan payment plan, who are facing financial challenges due to COVID-19, can defer their payment for up to 90 days with no penalty.
- BC Hydro COVID-19 Customer Assistance Program allows customers to defer bill payments or arrange for flexible payment plans with no penalty.
- BC Transit and TransLink are now free to ride.
- FortisBC is waiving late fees and will not disconnect service due to financial hardship at this time.
- TELUS Mobility for Good is a free smartphone, data, text & talk plan for ages 19-26 who were in the care of MCFD or a DAA, on a Youth Agreement, or are eligible for the Agreements for Young Adults Program.
- Existing TELUS Mobility for Good customers are able to contact email@example.com or call TELUS at 1 866 558-2273 and get transferred to a new plan which includes the Peace of Mind functionality which will eliminate data overage changes by reducing the speed of data after 3GB.
- Youth & young adults not eligible for TELUS Mobility for Good please contact your local DAA or MCFD office during the COVID-19 pandemic for more info on 100 pre-paid phones, SIM cards and phone numbers supplied by TELUS.
- Shaw Go WiFi is now FREE during the COVID-19 pandemic, not just for Shaw customers.
- Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) (Pending federal legislative change) – Available from May-Aug 2020 for post-secondary students & recent graduates, $1,250 per month ($1,750 per month for those with dependents or permanent disabilities) who are not eligible for CERB or EI, or are unable to work or find full-time employment due to COVID-19.
- B.C. Student Loan Payments are automatically frozen for March 30 - September 30, 2020.
- Canadian Student Loan Payments and Interest have all been placed on a six-month interest-free hold until September 30, 2020.
- Canada Student Grants and Loans is providing more supports for students.
- BC Government’s COVID-19 Supports Website
- Talk to a Service BC agent about non-health related information and services such as child care, travel restrictions, business and funding support through text at 1-604-630-0300, by phone 1-888-COVID19, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org (please don’t provide personal information when emailing).
- Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan and connect with a COVID-19 virtual assistant
- Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada is providing grants of up to $1000 to help support young people who have "aged out" of Canada's child welfare systems. For more information, a list of eligibility requirements by province, and a link to our online application form, please visit Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada (limited availability, please sign up to be notified).