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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: October 18th, 2021

The Ontario government intends to introduce legislation to require temp agencies and recruiters to have a licence to operate in the province.

Government of Ontario to require temp agencies and recruiters to be licensed

The Ontario government intends to introduce legislation that, if passed, would require temporary help agencies (THAs) and recruiters to have a licence to operate in the province. Proposed changes would enable officers to levy penalties against an unlicensed THA or recruiter or a business who is using an unlicensed operator. As well, those who use deceitful recruiters could be required to repay workers for illegal fees charged.

Inspections by ministry officers have shown that there are multiple temporary help agencies in Ontario that are illegally paying people below the minimum wage and denying other basic employment rights. In doing so, they gain an unfair competitive advantage over law-abiding agencies by undercutting rates.

Click here for more information.

Minister Ng highlights importance of small businesses in Canada’s economic recovery during Small Business Week

Yesterday, the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade, joined Canadians from coast to coast to coast to kick off 2021 Small Business Week, which recognizes and celebrates the resilience and innovation of entrepreneurs across the country.

Minister Ng highlighted the government’s commitment to support small businesses through the pandemic and into recovery—from historic support programs for rent, wages and operating costs, to the most small business–friendly budget in Canadian history in Budget 2021.

This includes encouraging Canadians to shop local, increasing their confidence through POST Promise, and partnering with chambers of commerce and business associations across the country to deliver rapid tests and encourage Canadians to get vaccinated.

Click here for more information.

Governments of Canada and Ontario to fund farmers in Lake Erie watershed

The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing $2.58 million to protect the province’s lakes and water sources by helping farmers implement sustainable farming practices that build more resilient farm operations.

Through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (the Partnership), the final Lake Erie Agriculture Demonstrating Sustainability (LEADS) initiative intake, will support on-farm projects that improve soil health and reduce the risk of nutrient losses on their farms while improving water quality in the Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair watershed areas.

The intake will open on November 2, 2021 and close on November 8, 2021. During this time, farmers can apply for cost-share funding for projects that benefit Lake Erie as well as support productivity and soil health for more acres of Ontario farmland.

Click here for more information.

Leave it out for the Lions food drive for Port Cares returns

The Port Colborne and Wainfleet Lions Clubs are once again going door-to-door on Saturday, October 23, to collect non-perishable food items for Port Cares’ Reach Out Centre food bank, which needs the help now more than ever.

The Lions Clubs have led this food drive for more than 40 consecutive years. It has historically been the food drive that has supplied the food bank through the harsh winter months. With Covid-19 much has changed – this year like last year, organizers are not able to have community members sort food donations at a local church.

Click here for more information.

Reading Recommendations

Canada’s ‘tax the rich’ plan leaves big debt risk untouched


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s new government is set to impose higher taxes on Canadians, which will help fund some campaign promises but are not broad enough to also start paying down the country’s record levels of debt, leaving Canada vulnerable to the next economic crisis, analysts say.

This could be a risky strategy for the country, which piled on new debt at a faster pace than any of its Group of Seven peers during the pandemic. The high level of indebtedness could limit Canada’s ability to manage long-term challenges that require massive government funding, like transitioning from a fossil fuel-reliant economy to a green one.

A far higher debt-to-GDP ratio post-pandemic means Canada has far less wiggle room to respond to the next crisis, be it economic, trade, climate or health-related, analysts say.

Strong Canadian business and consumer sentiment collide with capacity constraints, inflation worries

Financial Post

Canadian business and consumer sentiment was upbeat in the third quarter, but inflation pressures, labour shortages, and supply-chain disruptions pose challenges to the country’s economic outlook, according to a new central bank survey.

Canadian business confidence grew in the third quarter to the highest level since 2003, thanks to sizable demand both domestically and abroad, according to the Bank of Canada’s quarterly Business Outlook Survey released Monday. As Canadians resume normal spending activities, this growing demand is prompting a greater share of firms to increase their capital expenditures and staffing levels over the next year.

“A growing number of respondents plan to increase wages to address challenges in attracting and retaining labour,” the bank said, corroborating other studies that suggest employers are grappling with worker shortages. “Firms intend to continue passing increases in labour and other input costs on to their customers.”

Niagara COVID-19 statistics tracker

These data show the status of the COVID-19 pandemic in Niagara. The Province of Ontario is now using a provincewide approach to reopening, and these data no longer have any influence on Niagara’s restrictions. Lower numbers are better in all metrics.

 December 18December 25January 1January 8January 15January 22January 29
Reproductive number1.
New cases per 100,000101.2267.3469.8575.8507.1295.5250.6
New cases per day (not including outbreaks)60.7178.7311.7376.9325.4182.7145.7
Percent of hospital beds occupied97%95.2%98.2%103.2%104.5%103.6%106%
Percent of intensive care beds occupied78.8%77.3%87.9%87.9%90.9%89.4%93.9%
Percentage of positive tests6.1%15.6%28.1%28.6%26.6%21.2%16.2%

Last updated: October 9, 2021

Click here for definitions of terms used in this table.

On October 15, there were 14 patients admitted to Niagara Health with COVID-19, 10 of whom were unvaccinated and 4 of whom were fully vaccinated. There were 5 patients with COVID-19 in a Niagara Health Intensive Care Unit.

Over the last 28 days, a Niagara resident vaccinated with 1 dose was 3 times more likely to contract COVID-19, and an unvaccinated person was 6.5 times more likely. The average weekly rate of hospitalized cases in unvaccinated Canadians was 36 times higher compared to fully vaccinated people. Niagara Health has reported that no vaccinated patients have required intensive care to date.

Vaccination is one of the most effective ways to help protect ourselves, and our families and communities against COVID-19. Learn more here.

Data are drawn from Niagara Region Public Health and Niagara Health.

Niagara COVID vaccination tracker

Niagara’s most up-to-date vaccination numbers are presented below, along with comparison data from Ontario, Canada, and G7 countries.

 Percentage of population with one dosePercentage of population fully vaccinated
United States75%64%
United Kingdom78%72%

Total doses administered in Niagara: 720,953

New daily doses administered to Niagara residents: 592

Last updated: October 18, 2021

Data are drawn from Niagara Region, the Government of Ontario, and Oxford University’s Our World in Data project.

Vaccination is one of the most effective ways to help protect ourselves, and our families and communities against COVID-19. Learn more here.

Free rapid COVID-19 testing kits are now available to businesses. Visit to learn more and reserve kits for your organization.

Information on government grants, resources, and programs, policies, forms, and posters for download and use, are available here. The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.

Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.

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