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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: October 7th, 2021

Today, Nina Tangri, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction, announced Ontario’s Fall Red Tape Reduction Package.

Ontario government introduces Supporting People and Businesses Act

Today, Nina Tangri, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction, announced Ontario’s Fall Red Tape Reduction Package and introduced the Supporting People and Businesses Act.

Some of the proposed changes in the Act include:

  • Proposing changes to set the groundwork for the government to allow licensed restaurants, bars and other hospitality businesses to create or extend outdoor patio spaces.
  • Permanently enabling cannabis retail stores to offer delivery and curbside pick-up services.
  • Launching a new Ontario Business Registry that will offer businesses across the province direct online access to over 90 services 24/7 and will allow them to complete electronic transactions immediately.
  • Removing barriers for Ontario businesses that limit the use of virtual services such as calling and hosting meetings and voting.
  • Setting Regulated Price Plan (RPP) electricity prices once per year instead of twice.
  • Increasing financial supports and simplifying the application process for the Second Career program to help those looking for employment, train for occupations in high demand.
  • Implementing digital productivity tools, such as eSignatures, eApprovals, Binder Browser and OPSdocs.
  • Expediting planning approval timelines by providing municipal councils with greater authority in deciding what planning decisions can be made by committees of council or staff.

Click here for a full list of proposed changes.

Click here for more information.

Brock scores high marks for student support, satisfaction in national university rankings

For the fourth-straight year, Brock has earned the No. 1 ranking among all comprehensive universities in Canada for mental health supports while making improvements in other important areas in the 2022 Maclean’s University Rankings released Thursday, Oct. 7.

For the second year Brock has improved one spot in the overall rankings to 12th among comprehensive universities. Compared to all Canadian universities, Brock moves up three spots to 29th in the nation, an improvement of nine spots in the past two years.

Click here for more information.

Government of Canada warns of scams using fake Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) credentials

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is warning the public about ongoing email, web, text messages and telephone scams in which people posing as officials from the CBSA are asking for payment or personal information.

In some cases, these scams use false CBSA information. Telephone calls may display numbers and employee names that falsely appear to be from the CBSA. Emails may contain CBSA logos, email addresses or employee names and titles to mislead the public.

The public should also look out for fraudulent webpages and mobile applications posing as ArriveCAN or the Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) and asking for money.

The CBSA never initiates a request for social insurance number and credit card number by telephone or email. If an individual receives a telephone call or an email asking for this information, or requesting payments from the CBSA, it is a scam. If this happens, please ignore, hang up, don’t answer the text or email and report the incident to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

Click here for more information.

Canada endorses OECD joint statement on supporting global economic recovery from COVID-19

Over the last two days in Paris, the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade, and the Honourable Mona Fortier, Minister of Middle Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance, attended the 2021 Ministerial Council Meeting of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

OECD members, including Canada, endorsed a joint statement on their commitment to supporting the global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, and to building a more sustainable, inclusive and resilient future.

Click here for more information.

Reading Recommendations

Employment lawyers brace for first wave of COVID-19 layoffs as vaccine mandates kick in

CBC News

Canada is facing a potential wave of terminations tied to mandatory workplace vaccine policies as a growing number of employers require workers to be fully inoculated against COVID-19 — or risk losing their jobs, legal experts say.

Governments, institutions and companies have spent months hammering out vaccine mandates in a bid to curb an unrelenting pandemic fuelled by variants.

As employer deadlines to be fully vaccinated approach, unvaccinated workers could soon be placed on unpaid leave or terminated altogether, lawyers say.

Can an employer reduce an employee’s pay if they’re permanently working remotely?

CTV News

With many companies making remote work a permanent aspect of certain jobs, experts say employers cannot reduce a current employee’s salary without consent and face legal risks if they do.

However, employers can hire new, remote employees at lower wages, if they so desire.

Stephen Wolpert, a partner at Canadian employment law firm Whitten & Lublin, told an employer can change an employee’s pay if both parties agree to the reduction.

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 2, 2021

Click here for definitions of terms used in this table.

On October 6, there were 14 patients admitted to Niagara Health with COVID-19, 13 of whom were unvaccinated and 1 of whom was fully vaccinated. There were 4 patients with COVID-19 in a Niagara Health Intensive Care Unit.

Over the last 28 days, a Niagara resident vaccinated with 1 dose was 3.6 times more likely to contract COVID-19, and an unvaccinated person was 6.6 times more likely. The average weekly rate of hospitalized cases in unvaccinated Canadians was 38 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: 711,728

New daily doses administered to Niagara residents: 1,052

Last updated: October 7, 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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