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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

COVID-19 Business Update: September 23rd, 2020

Prime Minister Trudeau’s throne speech announced the government’s intent to create 1 million jobs in Canada, returning employment to pre-pandemic levels.
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:

  • Prime Minister Trudeau’s throne speech announced the government’s intent to create 1 million jobs in Canada, returning employment to pre-pandemic levels. Immediate steps will include extending the country’s emergency wage subsidy program until next summer and expanding credit facilities for companies, as well as more targeted support for the hardest hit industries. Top priorities remain health care and the immediate fight against the pandemic, followed by maintaining COVID-19 financial support for businesses and Canadians. The Throne Speech also laid out plans to crack down on digital giants, including measures to ensure they share revenues from media, music, art and film, and address corporate tax avoidance by digital giants as well as additional taxes on the most wealthy. The plan also pushes for the creation of a national childcare program to help women and one parent families to return to the workforce.
  • As of Friday, up to 60 pharmacies in Ontario will begin offering testing by appointment only, with further locations coming online in the coming weeks. This initiative will expand testing capacity well beyond the province’s 150 assessment centres. A list of locations can be accessed here. Individuals must follow all public health measures when going for a test, including wearing a mask, practising physical distancing, and frequent handwashing. Anyone feeling ill on the date of their appointment should stay home and re-schedule the test.
  • The Ontario government is launching a recruitment campaign to increase its team of frontline health and safety inspectors by 98 and help ensure workplaces across the province are doing their part to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The hiring of these new workers will see the number of active inspectors in the province increase from 409 to 507, an increase of 24 per cent. The full-year cost for the new inspectors will be $11.6 million. Recruitment of the inspectors will begin in early October 2020.

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.