OTTAWA — COVID-19 has all but stalled a promised shift in how Canadians appeal rulings on their requests for federal income supports.
The department overseeing the work, Employment and Social Development Canada, says the change won’t happen as originally scheduled next month because of pandemic-related risks.
In 2019, the Liberals promised to partially restore the system that existed before the previous Conservative government created the Social Security Tribunal in 2013.
The Liberals planned to bring back board hearings for the first layer of appeals inside the Social Security Tribunal, and retain a single arbitrator for the second, final, layer.
Three sources with knowledge of the government’s plans tell The Canadian Press the required legislative changes were to be in last year’s budget, which was shelved due to the pandemic.
The legislative change are expected to be in this year’s budget bill, say the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity to detail private conservations, or because they were not authorized to speak publicly about matters not yet public.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 1, 2021.
The Canadian Press