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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

COVID-19 Business Update: May 27th, 2020

Information on government grants, resources, and programs, and how to apply for them, is available here.
The Government of Canada has a support page with summaries of current programs and application portals.

Vital updates:

  • The Government of Ontario today extended the provincial state of emergency in accordance with provincial law, as expected. A full list of the emergency orders now extended until June 9, 2020 is available here. The GNCC believes that the state of emergency will likely be extended again prior to the June 9 expiration.
  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) today released a special edition of its Housing Market Outlook for spring 2020. The number of new homes being built and sold are expected to remain at or below pre-pandemic levels until 2022 at the earliest. In February, the average Canadian house price was $540,000; by April, it had fallen to $488,000. CMHC expects average house prices to remain between $493,000 and $510,000 for the rest of this year, with a recovery beginning in 2021 restoring prices to pre-pandemic levels in 2022. Home sales this year are predicted to fall by 29%, while new housing starts could drop by as much as 75%.
  • A CBC News analysis has revealed that 76% of Ontario’s new COVID-19 cases are in the GTA, with an additional 14% occurring in Ottawa, Windsor-Essex, and Hamilton, meaning that 9 in every 10 new cases was in these regions. With these data in mind, a one-size-fits-all approach to provincial re-opening may not be the best policy from either an economic or an epidemiological standpoint. Quebec and Alberta have already moved to more regionally-tailored approaches, with infection hotbeds subject to stronger lockdown policies than less-affected areas.
  • The Government of Canada is pledging to push provincial governments to offer 10 paid sick leave days to all workers. While we understand that people do become sick, particularly now, and that sickness should not endanger a person financially, we are also aware that businesses are under unprecedented pressure at this time. The GNCC is committed to advocating for your business. Please contact us with your comments or concerns on this policy, whatever they may be, and we will pass them on to our representatives in government.

Reading recommendations:


If you are showing symptoms, you must self-isolate for a minimum of 14 days. Call a public health authority immediately. Do not visit any healthcare provider in person before you have been directly advised to by public health authorities.

It is important that everyone practice physical distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Remain at home unless absolutely necessary. Minimize contact with other people. Wash hands frequently and thoroughly. Avoid touching the face. Maintain a 2-meter distance from others if you are required to be out in public. If you have recently traveled outside the country, you are legally required to self-isolate for 14 days.

Previous updates can be accessed here.

Stay safe and be vigilant. The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.