The Government of the Northwest Territories announced on Tuesday it was allocating $6.2 million to bump up low-wage workers’ salaries to $18 per hour from April 1 to July 31.
Businesses can begin applying for this temporary funding immediately. It applies to workers who are currently earning less than $18 per hour and who are over 15 years old.
Workers are encouraged to flag the program for their employers and make sure their employers are applying for the taxable benefit on their behalf.
The new program “is intended to assist all lower-wage workers working to keep the economy running while physical distancing measures are in place,” said the territorial government in a news release.
“All residents and families are struggling in some way during this pandemic. My hope is that these measures will offer some relief, and a well-deserved ‘thank-you’, to those among us who need and deserve it most,” said finance minister Caroline Wawzonek.
The minister said further supports will shortly be introduced for residents and businesses to help rebuild the NWT’s economy.
Of the $6.2 million wage top-up, $4.74 million comes from the federal government.
To apply, employers need to fill out an application detailing their eligible employees’ hours and wages.
Approved applicants will receive monthly payments from the GNWT for up to 16 weeks.