Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit (CWLB)
The Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit (CWLB) gives temporary income support to employed and self-employed people who cannot work due to a COVID-19 lockdown.
The CWLB is administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
Ontario has been designated as an eligible COVID-19 lockdown region and Ontario performers can apply for the weekly $300 ($270 after taxes withheld) CWLB for the period from Dec 19, 2021 until Feb 12, 2022 (for now).
Eligibility is similar to CERB/CRB, but eligibility for CWLB requires one of the following conditions to be met during the application period:
- you lost your job and are unemployed;
- you are self-employed but unable to continue your work; or
- you are employed or self-employed but had a reduction of at least 50% in your average weekly income as compared to the previous year.
Artists who are self-employed but have been unable to continue their work due to the lockdown should be eligible.
UPDATE: January 20, 2022
Ontario Outlines Steps to Cautiously and Gradually Ease Public Health Measures
TORONTO — With key public health and health care indicators starting to show signs of improvement, the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, today released details of steps to cautiously and gradually ease public health measures, starting on January 31, 2022.
UPDATE: January 3, 2022
Ontario Temporarily Moving to Modified Step Two of the Roadmap to Reopen
TORONTO — In response to recent trends that show an alarming increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations, the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, is temporarily moving the province into Step Two of its Roadmap to Reopen with modifications that take into account the province’s successful vaccination efforts.
UPDATE: December 30, 2021
Ontario Updating Public Health Measures and Guidance in Response to Omicron
TORONTO — In response to the highly transmissible Omicron variant, the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, is taking further action to provide additional protection to high-risk settings, and continue to safeguard hospitals and ICU capacity as the province continues to rapidly accelerate its booster dose rollout. Based on the latest evidence and Ontario’s high rate of vaccination, the province is also updating testing and isolation guidelines to protect our most vulnerable and maintain the stability of critical workforces, including frontline health care workers, first responders and critical infrastructure like energy and food and supply chains.
Stop the spread of COVID-19
Please continue to take care and be vigilant in following health and safety protocols at work and best practices at home:
What are the best steps to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect your health?
- Maintain physical distance (Keep 6 ft/2m apart)
- Wear a mask
- Wash your hands
Follow the protocols and practices for wardrobe, props, barriers for any scenes that require being in close contact with others.
ACTRA Toronto continues to support and adhere to all public health advisories and legislation regarding Covid-19 and vaccination, and encourages all members to get vaccinated if they are medically able and to continue to adhere to the safety protocols that have been so successful to-date in the industry. For more information, see our Vaccination Policy and FAQ page
IMPORTANT: ACTRA does not create on set safety policies. The obligation to create health and safety policies, including Covid-19 policies, rests with the individual producer and engager. ACTRA is actively engaged in ensuring the health and safety of our members on set and will challenge any policy deemed to be unreasonable or discriminatory under the Human Rights Code.
Be “Ready to Roll” with a personal COVID-19 kit
CREATE A COVID-19 SET KIT
Include the following:
- a mask
- a reusable water bottle
- hand sanitizer
- a few sterile wipes
- reusable cutlery
- a pen
- snacks – e.g. granola and energy bars
Mental Health Resources
In these times, reaching out for support and looking after your mental health is so important.
City of Toronto COVID-19: Mental Health Resources
It’s OK not to feel OK
Many people may feel sad, stressed, anxious, confused, scared or angry during the COVID-19 pandemic. These are normal and common responses to unexpected or stressful situations.
Support is available. At the beginning of the pandemic, the City of Toronto partnered with 13 organizations to help connect residents to free telephone, text and online mental health support during the COVID-19 pandemic. On April 16, 2021 the City announced partnerships with an additional 18 organizations to ensure that residents have increased access to mental health resources…
ACTRA Toronto’s Mental Health Support page
You can find a list of links to on-line and emergency mental health supports on ACTRA Toronto’s updated Mental Health Support page. Please spend the time to see what is available and share with others.
What can you expect on set?
Watch ACTRAToronto@work to hear first hand stories of ACTRA performers back at work. From the audition process to sets and studios locally and afar, performers share their experiences and advice.
Waiting for a Commercial payment?
Please don’t forget to take a picture of your completed contract when working on a commercial and email it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. This helps us to make sure you are paid properly and in a timely manner.
Commercial staff, working remotely and some on reduced hours, continue to process call-back cheques and commercial payments. Commercial coordinators who check the “cheques” for errors have collected over $900,000 for performers in the last 9 months of this pandemic.
Thank you, ACTRA Toronto Commercial staff!
Commercial cheques are not available for pick up but are being mailed to either home or agent, according to the instructions we have on file for you.
ACTRA Toronto Business Representatives and OSLOs:
Workplace COVID-19 protocols apply to ACTRA Business Representatives and the ACTRA Toronto Onset Liaison Officers (OSLOs). We are visiting as many sets as possible but are minimizing risks by reaching out to sets remotely too. If you need to reach ACTRA Toronto urgently or have a question for a rep, you can:
- call the main switchboard at ACTRA Toronto 416-928-2278
- send an e-mail to email@example.com or
- access the HAVEN Helpline (1-855-201-7823) in case of harassment or for mental health support.
ACTRA Toronto Service Update
For regular updates and to reach ACTRA Toronto during this period, bookmark this page for links to COVID-19 Resources, recordings of our previous Virtual Town Hall meetings and our COVID-19 Best Practices FAQ or call us at 416-928-2278.
Our phone lines (Main: 416.928.2278, Toll-free: 1-877-913-2278) remain open. Listen to the voice prompts and press zero to leave a brief message. We will return calls according to priority and as soon as possible. Your patience and cooperation are appreciated.
In the meantime, you will get the fastest response to questions and concerns not dealt with on the website by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For mental health support, please call the Haven Helpline at 1-855-201-7823.
We remain deeply concerned about the impact of COVID-19 across the economy and are working with all levels of government to provide assistance and financial support. In Ontario, we work with our industry and government partners through FilmOntario.
We encourage all members to follow the advice of health professionals. We appreciate that the current situation is cause for concern and anxiety and are grateful for steps performers are taking to look after each other — providing support to those who are particularly vulnerable in these times.
Links to helpful resources are organized by category below. Click on the category tile to display/hide the list of links in the category.
- Public Health Agency of Canada
- Ontario Ministry of Health: The 2019 Novel Coronavirus
- Toronto Public Health: Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19 Page)
- Telehealth Ontario can be reached at 1-866-797-0000
- Telehealth Ontario TTY can be reached at 1-866-797-0007
- World Health Organization
- WSPS (Workplace Safety & Prevention Services)
ACTRA Toronto Virtual Town Hall Recordings
ACTRA Toronto's COVID 19 Best Practices page
ACTRA Toronto Stories
- ACTRA Spotlight – Stories about ACTRA Toronto member volunteerism, union activism and professional development during COVID-19!
- Ontario Film Commission – Professional Development & Learning Resources
- CBC List of Helpful Links for Artists and Freelancers
- Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre - COVID-19 Fraud
- Ontario Ministry of Health - COVID-19 Guidance: Considerations for Employer Rapid Antigen Screening Pilot - November 20, 2020
- Ontario Ministry of Health - COVID-19 Provincial Testing Guidance - November 20, 2020 Update
Private Testing Facilities
This list is provided for convenience only. ACTRA Toronto cannot recommend nor endorse testing facilities.