Alberta Critical Worker Benefit

Niels Jensen
| 2/16/2021

The Alberta Government introduced a one-time payment to recognize Alberta’s critical workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Up to $465 million in funding will be distributed to over 380,000 workers in health-care, social services, education, and private sectors.

What is the program?

The Alberta Critical Worker Benefit (ACWB) will provide a one-time payment of $1,200 to eligible Albertans who provide care and critical services in the province.

Who is eligible to apply?

Employees in the public sector including health care workers, social workers, and education workers that meet all of the benefit’s criteria will be eligible. The Alberta Government will be handling the application and payment to eligible individuals in the public sector.

Employees in the private sector that meet the eligibility criteria must have their employers apply on their behalf.

In order for private sector employees to be eligible, they must:

  • earn $25 an hour or less;
  • have worked at least 300 hours between the period of October 12, 2020 and January 31, 2021; and
  • be located and working in Alberta.

Eligible private sector industries include:

  • Grocery
  • Pharmacy
  • Gas
  • Health
  • Personal care
  • Food manufacturing
  • Truck transportation
  • Warehousing and storage
  • Private health clinics
  • Private sector workers in First Nation communities.

A detailed list of eligible occupations and eligibility criteria can be found here

How can a business apply?

Eligible public sector workers do not need to apply for the ACWB. The Alberta Government will work with eligible public sector employers to distribute the benefit.

Private sector businesses with eligible employees must apply on behalf on their employees using the application portal which will launch on February 17, 2021. The portal will be available from the Alberta Government’s website.

When can a business apply?

Applications open on February 17, 2021 and the deadline to apply for ACWB is March 19, 2021.