Groups Opposing LGBTQ Rights, Abortion Received Federal Wage Subsidy


Organizations that oppose LGBTQ+ rights, spread false information about abortions and push pandemic conspiracy theories are among the recipeints of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy.

HuffPost Canada reviewed Canada Revenue Agency’s wage subsidy registry of businesses, non-profit organizations and associations that received taxpayer money to help them pay workers during the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Third Day Worship Centre, Journey Canada, Real Women of Canada, close to 20 anti-abortion groups and the Epoch Times are among the growing number of controversial groups that qualified for wage subsidies, known as CEWS.

Questions have also been raised about why profitable oil companies, foreign-owned airlines, white nationalist Paul Fromm’s Canadian Association for Free Expression, and a business run by a man accused of financing terrorism received emergency funding.

The registry doesn’t disclose the amount each group received but Ottawa has approved more than $59 billion in subsidies.

CEWS recipient Third Day Worship Centre, an Evangelical church in Kingston, Ont., made headlines last fall when a leaked video showed pastor Francis Armstrong preaching against homosexuality and the Muslim community and cast doubts about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Armstrong promoted the conspiracy theory that Microsoft founder Bill Gates is using the COVID-19 vaccination campaign to implant microchips into billions of people to track their movements.

In a statement, Third Day Worship Centre said it “is a legally constituted Canadian corporation fully entitled under the requirements of CEWS to receive benefits to aid our employees.

“Nowhere do the CEWS regulations reference, as prohibited grounds for receiving funds, media-contrived definitions of ‘controversial’ that just happen to suit reporters desperate to invent a story, perhaps to save their own jobs.”