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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

COVID-19 Business Update: October 6th, 2020

The Ontario government is investing $19.25 million into mental health supports for postsecondary students in 2020-21, an increase of $3.25 million over last year.
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 Ontario government is investing $19.25 million into mental health supports for postsecondary students in 2020-21, an increase of $3.25 million over last year. This funding is intended to help students by strengthening community partnerships and increasing the number of mental health workers and programs at colleges, universities and Indigenous Institutes. In 2020-21, the ministry is investing in the following initiatives supporting student mental health:
    • Good2Talk/Allo j’écoute ($5.16M) mental health helpline service for postsecondary students, available 24/7/365;
    • Centre for Innovation in Campus Mental Health ($0.5M): knowledge exchange hub providing resources and access to expertise for the postsecondary sector;
    • Mental Health Worker Grant ($4.45M) for front-line mental health service workers on campuses, annual ongoing support to 45 colleges and universities to offset the costs of hiring front-line, campus-based mental health workers;
    • Mental Health Services Grant ($6M): annual support to 45 colleges and universities, for the development of programs and services as determined by the institution;
    • Indigenous Institutes Mental Health Grant ($0.5M)support to the 9 Indigenous Institutes in Ontario for the provision of mental health services, staff, and needs assessment as needed;
    • Get-A-head ($250,000) – the ministry is providing one-time funding to support the launch of a mental health online application.
  • Canadian Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam has urged Canadians to think carefully about their Thanksgiving plans this year to protect themselves, their loved ones and communities. At his press briefing today, Premier Ford expressed similar concerns for Ontarians. Canadian Minister of Health Patty Hajdu recommends that families celebrate Thanksgiving virtually this year. Gatherings indoors will be safest if they only include household members, especially where infection rates are highest. Gatherings outdoors that involve people from outside our households will be safest if well-spaced. Remember, too close is too close, even if you are outdoors. Don’t share food or objects. “Bring-Your-Own” is safer.
  • Businesses and residents in Port Colborne may notice temporarily abnormal water pressures during the month of October as routine maintenance and inspection is completed on the water tower. Tap water will remain safe to drink. If low water pressure occurs for longer than 24 hours, the City of Port Colborne suggests calling their Operations Department at 905-835-5079.
  • The township of West Lincoln is alerting residents to a scam in which calls are made about a credit on their water bill. The Township will never call to request banking information, and requests that residents and businesses spread the word to friends and family.
  • The Town of Pelham is petitioning other governments for financial support in developing a municipal cannabis regulatory framework and in meeting the court challenges faced as a result. The town has asked Dean Allison MP and Sam Oosterhoff MPP to champion this cause in the federal and provincial legislatures, and is seeking voluntary contributions of $15,000 each from the cities of Welland and Thorold towards its defense in the legal actions brought against the town by Woodstock Biomed Inc., CannTrust Holdings and Redecan Pharm.

Reading recommendations:


 If you are showing symptoms, contact your health care provider, call the Public Health Info-Line at 905-688-8248, or chat to Public Health online. For testing, call 905-378-4647 ext. 42819 (4-CV19) for information on test centres in Niagara and to book an appointment.

Remember that a COVID-19 test is only a snapshot of your health on the specific date and time the swab was taken. No testing is perfect and a negative result doesn’t mean you haven’t been exposed to COVID-19. You can still develop symptoms days after your test was taken.

It is important that everyone practice physical distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Maintain a 2-metre distance from other people. When maintaining distance is impossible, wear a mask or face covering. Wash hands frequently and thoroughly. Avoid touching the face. 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.