B.C. COVID-19 Temporary Pandemic Pay

Temporary pandemic pay supports health, social services and corrections employees delivering in-person, front-line care during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes employees delivering a range of health and social services to people most vulnerable to COVID-19, where maintaining physical distancing is difficult or impossible.

Last updated: June 11, 2020

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Determine Your Eligibility

To receive temporary pandemic pay, an employee must:

  • Have been working straight-time hours at any point during the 16-week period starting on March 15, 2020, at the height of the Province’s response to the pandemic
    • Straight-time hours are an employee's normal hours. Overtime hours are not eligible
    • Casual, on-call, and part-time workers who have worked straight-time hours during this period are also eligible
  • Work in an eligible sector, workplace and role delivering in-person, front-line care in health, social services and corrections
  • Provide additional support and relief to front-line workers by working in ways that directly serve vulnerable populations

Temporary pandemic pay is not dependent on whether there is a COVID-19 outbreak in the workplace location.

  • Excluded management staff, fee-for-service providers (and their direct employees) or employees on leave are not eligible

Provincially funded service providers and employers with eligible workplaces and roles will be contacted by their funding ministry or employers’ association with further information in the coming weeks.

Eligible Sectors, Workplaces and Roles

Health Services

  • Hospitals
  • Long term care and assisted living facilities
  • Provincial mental health facilities
  • Provincially funded home and community care services
  • Public health units
  • Primary care clinics
  • Diagnostic facilities
  • Community clinics
  • Diagnostic and treatment centres
  • Registered nurses
  • Licensed practical nurses
  • Registered psychiatric nurses
  • Allied health professionals
  • Resident doctors
  • Health care assistants, community health workers and other patient care support workers
  • Paramedics
  • Pharmacists
  • Administrative/clerical support roles
  • Essential non-clinical staff, including
    • Food service workers
    • Housekeepers
    • Laundry workers
    • Porters
    • Security
    • Other key roles


Social Services

Community living

  • Residential services
  • Intervenor residential sites

Indigenous services

  • Delegated aboriginal agencies
  • Friendship centres providing critical services
  • Healing and wellness facilities and shelters

Harm reduction

  • Shelters for survivors of gender-based violence and human trafficking
  • Directly operated residential facilities
  • Adult justice residential facilities
  • Safe Injection sites
  • Emergency outreach harm reduction workers
  • Emergency shelters
  • Supportive housing facilities
  • Respite/drop-in centres
  • Temporary shelter facilities
  • Hotels or motels used for self-isolation and/or shelter overflow

Youth services

  • High risk youth services
  • Youth justice residential facilities
  • Licenced children's residential sites

Immigrant services

  • High risk support services for immigrants and refugees
  • High risk immigrant youth services
  • Settlement services

Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction (SDPR)

  • SDPR Income Assistance and Disability Assistance Offices
  • SDPR/Service BC Integrated Offices
  • SDPR Contact Center Offices

Service BC

  • Service BC offices
  • Victoria Corporate Registries Branch

Ministry of Child and Family Development (MCFD)

  • Service Delivery Division

BC Housing

  • BC Housing main location and other offices

Community Living BC

  • Local offices
  • Provincial assessment centre

Social services

  • Community support workers
  • Employment support workers
  • Residence workers
  • Adult/youth workers
  • Transition house workers
  • Stopping the violence counsellors
  • Victim service workers
  • Emergency shelter workers
  • Program coordinators
  • Counsellors
  • Occupational and physical therapists
  • Behavioural therapists
  • Family preservation workers
  • Domestic violence workers
  • Social workers
  • Child and youth mental health workers
  • Indigenous service workers
  • Administrative and client support roles
  • Essential operation support staff, including:
    • Maintenance workers
    • Housekeepers
    • Janitors
    • Food service workers
    • Passenger vehicle drivers
    • Other key roles.

Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction (SDPR) ​

  • Employment and assistance workers
  • Client services workers
  • Community integration specialists
  • Service delivery division supervisors
  • Service delivery division assistant supervisors
  • Service delivery division supervisors of administrative services

Service BC

  • Customer service representatives
  • Registries support clerk
  • Administrative assistants
  • Manager of administration

Ministry of Child and Family Development (MCFD) ​

  • Child protection workers
  • Resource workers
  • Child and Family Services workers
  • Adoptions workers
  • Mental health workers
  • Special needs workers
  • Community youth justice workers

BC Housing workplaces

  • Tenant support workers
  • Maintenance and janitorial workers
  • Pest control and building management workers
  • Registered nurse

Community Living BC

  • Registered nurse
  • Mental health support worker
  • Occupational therapist
  • Dietary aide



  • Adult correctional facilities and youth justice facilities
  • Community corrections offices
  • Sheriff services division (Deputy Sheriffs only)
  • Correctional officers
  • Correctional instructors
  • Correctional supervisors
  • Youth supervisors
  • Social workers
  • Case management supervisors
  • Health care workers
  • Psychologists
  • Finance and administrative clerks
  • Administration staff
  • Chaplains
  • Aboriginal liaison officers
  • Youth custody nurses
  • Probation officers
  • Senior probation officers
  • Local manager (bargaining unit)
  • Office assistants
  • Office manager (bargaining unit)
  • Chef manager (bargaining unit)
  • Cooks
  • General helpers
  • Deputy sheriffs


How to Get Paid

No application is required.  Government provides the funds to employers, who are then responsible for distributing the funds to eligible employees in the coming weeks as lump-sum payments.

  • It is not a wage increase
  • Pandemic pay will be distributed as lump-sum payments, so people should not expect to see the funds on every paycheque
  • The timing and frequency of the lump-sum payments may vary between employers
  • The payment does not impact eligibility for Employment Insurance (EI) or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)

Eligible front-line workers can expect to receive a lump-sum payment equivalent to about $4 per hour for straight-time hours worked anytime over a 16-week period, starting on March 15, 2020.

For example: 

$140 per week = $4 x 35 hours or $2,240 for 16 weeks.

Base Salary, Benefits and Pension

The lump-sum temporary pandemic pay is taxable.

  • It does not affect your pension (because it is a lump-sum)
    • If you are not a member of the Municipal Pension Plan you should confirm with your employer
  • It is not part of your base salary
  • It has no impact on benefits paid by your employer

Vacation and Leaves

Eligible employees will only receive pandemic pay for straight-time hours worked starting on March 15, 2020 and continuing over a 16-week period. It does not apply to time where employees were not in the workplace due to

  • Vacation
  • Any authorized paid leave, including sick leave

Union Dues

  • Some eligible employees are represented by a union. For some employees, union dues are a percentage of earnings or a fixed rate
  • Consult with your employer to confirm whether dues will apply to this specific lump-sum payment