COVID-19 Update: Athlete Support Resources

As this is a rapidly changing environment, we have done our best to compile a helpful summary of advice and resources for our members. However, we understand that it is not exhaustive, and it is not intended to substitute professional legal, mental health or financial advice. Please follow the links provided to obtain the latest information. 

If you are in danger, unwell, or in a situation with legal implications, please seek appropriate assistance. AthletesCAN will always do its best to connect you to the right professional if needed.



  • Game Plan Resource Hub
  • Your MPC, Coach or Game Plan advisor
  • The #GamePlan community private Facebook group. Contact your Game Plan advisor for more info.
  • Morneau Shepell's mental health support line: 1-844-240-2990 


The CCMHS is a not-for-profit organization supporting the mental health and performance of competitive and high-performance athletes and coaches. The CCMHS is the first Centre in Canada to offer collaborative sport-focused mental health care services designed to help athletes and coaches achieve their performance goals while preserving their mental health and well-being. The CCMHS rests on 3 pillars of success: Integrated Care, Research, and Community Engagement.


Robyn Meagher (2x Olympian, Clinical Counselor and Performance Coach) and Jason Dorland (Olympian, Author and Performance Coach) are happy to share  counseling / coaching services to any athlete who would like to reach out for support during these uncertain times. Pro bono services available in absense of coverage. 

Find out more about Robyn and Jason's work:

[email protected]
[email protected]


Sport Solution is here to help you if you have any concerns in the coming months about any of the following issues: 

• Team Selection
• AAP Funding / Carding
• Discipline
• Anti-Doping Violations
• Athlete Trusts
• Harassment
• Other Sports Related Legal Concerns

Toll Free: 1-888-434-8883
Tel: (519) 661-4163
Email: [email protected]



Most athletes have been asking about access to employment insurance (“EI”) and the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (“CERB”). The CERB is available to everyone who made at least $5000 in the last 12 months or previous tax year, and who has lost their income due to COVID-19, whether or not they are regularly eligible for EI.

The CERB application opens April 6, 2020, but will be staggered by birthday to avoid system overload. As long as individuals meet the $5,000 threshold and have lost their income, or expect to lose their income for 14 consecutive days due to COVID-19, they can apply and will likely be eligible. All those eligible, regardless of how much they made before, will get $2,000 per month, paid bi-weekly for a period of up to 16 weeks. Everyone must re-apply each 4 week period. Application will be through a Service Canada online portal at a link that will be published widely when the site goes live, and they will also be able to apply over the phone. People can keep their job (for example, they can be temporarily laid off) and still be eligible for the CERB, but they must not be receiving payment from their work if they want to receive the CERB. How exactly that will relate to minor sources of income, like odd jobs, remains to be determined but there are ongoing lobbying efforts to lessen the restriction on receiving “any income” for 14 consecutive days. 

How does CERB relate to EI?

People who qualify for EI will automatically qualify for the CERB, but you cannot receive both at the same time. If you are receiving regular EI or sickness benefits, those benefits will continue. However, if your application for EI is pending, your application will be transferred to the new system and you will receive the CERB. You can also still apply through the EI system, but you will receive the CERB.

If you qualify for EI, but gain access to CERB, you will still be able to claim EI at the end of the 16-week period covered by the CERB. If you are already receiving EI benefits that expire before October 3, 2020 when the CERB eligibility period ends, you can claim the new benefit at the end of your EI.

Does carding qualify as “income” for the CERB?

Likely, the answer is unfortunately “no” as carding is not taxable income, nor has it been “lost” due to COVID-19 for the time being. However, think of any other income you might have received (and if mandated, reported on your tax return) last year – sponsorships, prize money, appearance fees etc., and be specific and detailed about what you have lost an opportunity to receive as a result of COVID-19. We encourage athletes to apply for the CERB even if they are unsure whether they are eligible. Though there are no guarantees, AthletesCAN, along with its sport partners, is undertaking efforts to lobby the federal government to make sure protections are afforded to athletes.


Canadian banks have committed to work with their customers on a case-by-case basis to find solutions to help them manage hardships caused by COVID-19. Athletes who are impacted by COVID-19 and experiencing financial hardship as a result should contact their financial institution regarding flexibility for a mortgage deferral.


Provinces have stated that no new eviction orders will be issued until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Need I pay rent?

The short answer is yes. While a landlord’s ability to obtain an eviction order for non-payment of rent has been suspended, this is a temporary measure. If a tenant stops paying rent, a landlord may still serve a notice to end a tenancy for non-payment of rent, which is often the first step in the eviction process. Once the suspension on new eviction orders has been lifted, the landlord may apply to for an order to terminate the tenancy. If you are unable to pay your rent due to the COVID-19 outbreak, it is best to speak to your landlord to coordinate an arrangement.

Landlords are expected to be fair, reasonable and empathetic in the circumstances. Likely, once any suspension is lifted, there will be a significant backlog before any eviction will take place. However, it’s always best to have a positive relationship with your landlord where possible, so a collaborative approach is better here.

Approaching a landlord if you can’t pay rent – specific considerations and things to know:

An agreement between a landlord and the tenant to alter the payment of rent is permitted, long as it does not violate the terms of residential tenancy legislation.

The landlord may enter into an agreement with the tenant to permit the tenant to fall into “arrears” of rent payments on an emergency basis. It’s best that the agreement is in the form of an acknowledgment by the landlord that the tenant may temporarily accrue arrears, rather than either (a) a reduction in rent followed by a subsequent increase, (b) permitting the delay of rent payments, or (c) a promissory note to pay by the tenant (which comes with its own set of complexities and doesn’t add any new legal obligations).

As part of the agreement to permit arrears, the landlord can agree that it will not proceed against the tenant for a temporary period of time. The agreement can be accompanied by a repayment schedule that does not exceed the length of the term of the tenancy, and does not exceed 1 year from the date the arrears began to accrue.

Can I ask for a reduction of rent because services (like gym, pool, party room) have been reduced or closed?

In most provinces and territories, tenants have the right to bring an application for a reduction of rent due to a decrease in services. However, most provincial statutes permit the landlord to reduce services without affecting rent if the discontinuance or reduction is temporary and its duration is reasonable. A tenant should be reasonable in the circumstances, knowing that there is a larger safety reason your landlord will be doing this.


 Benefit Information 101 (Compiled by Jennifer Robson, Associate Professor of Political Management, Carleton University using public information)
•  Canada's COVID-19 Economic Response Plan
•  Temporary Wage Subsidy FAQ
•  Provincial Information:
British Columbia
New Brunswick

Newfoundland & Labrador
Northwest Territories
Nova Scotia
Prince Edward Island


Online workouts:

Oliver Bone
Lean Squad

Take an online course:

Respect in Sport for Activity Leaders
Dale Carnegie Webinar
Skill Share


Stay Connected: 

Purolator Shipping Program online options
so you can continue to social distance.