The Liberals’ latest emergency legislation will not be moving forward as opposition parties have refused to give unanimous consent to speedily pass a bill that proposed jail time for CERB fraudsters.
The motion was denied in the House of Commons unanimously by the Conservatives, Bloc Quebecois, NDP and Greens.
The now-delayed bill includes a proposed expansion of the wage subsidy program to include seasonal workers and some additional businesses, as well as proposed penalties for fraudulently claiming the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), including a $5,000 fine and up to six months in jail.
The Liberal Party of Canada was bidding to split the bill in two, to allow the promised benefits for Canadians with disabilities to go ahead, but this was denied on Wednesday.
Trudeau originally announced the one-time, non-repayable payment of $600 for those with disabilities in a press conference on June 5.
Those benefits are now in limbo, along with other measures in the bill.
It also proposes changes to the CERB in response to concerns that the benefit is discouraging people from returning to low-paying jobs.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh strongly opposed the idea of incriminating Canadians who fraudulently applied for the CERB, saying they are most likely vulnerable people facing hardships during COVID-19.
Liberal leader and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the goal of the bill was to hold fraudsters accountable, not to punish those who mistakenly applied for the CERB.
Government House leader Pablo Rodriguez says the Liberals will attempt to find other ways to deliver on those promises.
With files from the Canadian Press