The health and safety of Canadians is our Government’s top priority in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. We have been monitoring closely the evolution of the virus and its impact both in Canada and in countries around the world. In this context, I wanted to acknowledge the impact the pandemic is likely having on your ability to implement your programming with Global Affairs Canada, causing delays or cancellation of activities, affecting the responsiveness of local partners, and quite significantly, the impact related to the need for Canadians to return to Canada as the best means to ensure their health and safety.
We recognize that bringing Canadian participants in your projects home at this time will result in your organization incurring unplanned costs. In this context, I wanted to assure you that there will be no contractual or financial barriers preventing you from getting Canadians home.
Global Affairs Canada is committed to working with you to support the successful delivery of your project results and to support the health and safety of your project participants. I invite you to reach out to your contact within my organisation to discuss the impact of the pandemic on your project and any questions you may have with respect to additional costs that may be incurred. As we are all transitioning to this new reality of COVID-19, it may take some time to work through the implications but rest assured that we remain committed to supporting you and the important work you do.
Finally, COVID-19 is testing our resilience. While I have seen first hand the resilience of development and humanitarian workers, as you continue your work and at the same time are providing support to children, ageing parents, friends and neighbours, please pay attention to yourself.
The Honourable Karina Gould, P.C., M.P.