Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is promising to lower the government’s eligibility requirements for Canadians needing help to care for a sick loved one.

If elected, Trudeau says a Liberal government would invest $190 million to expand the compassionate care benefit and make it accessible to any Canadian looking after a seriously ill family member. Under current rules people can take six months of leave to care for a loved one under Employment Insurance — but only if their loved one may die in that time. More than eight million Canadians took compassionate leave in 2012, says Statistics Canada.

While eligibility rules would change under the Liberals, applicants would still have to submit a medical certificate.

Trudeau stressed the expanded program wouldn’t lead to Canadians paying higher employment insurance premiums.


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