The Province has dedicated their Biz Connect web page to provide workplace guidance and supports to help businesses and non-profits affected by COVID-19 begin to reopen and resume operations safely https://www.alberta.ca/biz-connect.aspx#guidance
As businesses prepare to reopen, it’s important to take measures to protect employees and customers:
- practice good hygiene and thorough cleaning and disinfecting
- use Health Canada approved hard-surface disinfectants and hand sanitizers for use against COVID-19 (search products by DIN number)
- aid physical separation through barriers (Plexiglas), signage and floor markings, and traffic flow controls to limit the number of people in a space
- use personal protective equipment (PPE)
Business owners can purchase PPE through the following procurement websites:
A recent business impact survey—a joint effort between the Alberta Chambers of Commerce (ACC), Community Futures Alberta, and Economic Developers Alberta (EDA)—shows many businesses will face obstacles to Alberta’s phase one economic relaunch, scheduled to begin May 14. The survey—which took place online between April 10 and April 26, 2020—revealed half of Alberta businesses have laid off employees while 42 per cent of respondents have employees working reduced hours. Among businesses reporting layoffs, 57 per cent of respondents say they have laid off more than half their employees. See full survey results HERE
In these unsettling times it can be difficult to navigate one’s way through the ever-mounting information and resources. As governments at all levels release information as the days unfold, here are some resources that may be of assistance during this COVID-19 pandemic:
Government of Canada resources: For the latest updates: www.canada.ca
- Small and medium size businesses in rural communities impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for new funding. Rural businesses can apply for loans of up to $40,000 from the $95.7 million earmarked for Western Canada through the Government of Canada’s Regional Relief and Recovery Fund.
- The new Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) provides a 75% wage subsidy to eligible employers for up to 12 weeks, retroactive to March 15, 2020 https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan/wage-subsidy.html
- $2000/month for up to four months for those that have lost their income due to COVID-19 https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/apply-for-cerb-with-cra.html#start
- The Federal government announced that the government is establishing a Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) to support financing in the private sector through the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC). https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/programs/financial-sector-policy/business-credit-availability-program.html
- The new Canada Emergency Business Account will provide interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs during a period where their revenues have been temporarily reduced.
- Information for businesses: www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html#business
Small Business Loan: Up to $100,000 can be obtained online.
Working capital loan: For loans over $100,000 and can support everyday operations.
Purchase Order Financing: Loans to fulfill domestic or international orders.
- Workshare program: The Government of Canada offers the Work-Sharing Program, which is designed to help employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity that is beyond the control of the employer. For more info check out the Work-Sharing program website or call the Employer Contact Centre at 1-800-367-5693. www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/services/work-sharing.html
- Employment Insurance Program: The Government of Canada offers benefits for individuals who may qualify if they have lost their job. https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei.html
- For employers: https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/programs/ei/ei-list/ei-employers.html
Government of Alberta resources: For the latest updates: https://www.alberta.ca
Alberta’s safely staged COVID-19 relaunch. A phased relaunch will put Albertans’ safety first as we gradually reopen closed businesses and services and get people back to work. https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=70217037B8E9C-C319-32CC-240D33487895E4F7
The Government of Alberta announced the creation of the Site Rehabilitation Program to fund abandonment and reclamation activities. The Site Rehabilitation Program will provide grants to oil field service contractors to perform well, pipeline, and oil and gas site closure and reclamation work, creating jobs and supporting the environment. https://www.alberta.ca/site-rehabilitation-program.aspx
Alberta Bits and Pieces Program: If you, your company, or your organization has a product or service to offer, please submit your intent below.
Alberta Health Services’ Information on PPE (including Offers of Help and PPE Task Force Guidelines)
- Information for Businesses https://www.alberta.ca/covid-19-financial-support-for-businesses-and-organizations.aspx
- Talk to a small business advisor at Business Link to get free advice, coaching and information on COVID-19 resources and supports.
- Information for Employers: https://www.alberta.ca/covid-19-support-for-employers.aspx
- Employment Standards, information on employment rules for layoffs and terminations: https://www.alberta.ca/temporary-layoffs.aspx
- Information for Albertans: https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx
- Albertans who are self-isolating and unable to work can now apply online for emergency one-time funding from the province https://www.alberta.ca/emergency-isolation-support.aspx
- Supports for Albertans: https://www.alberta.ca/covid-19-supports-for-albertans.aspx
- Income support policy and contact info: https://www.alberta.ca/income-support.aspx
- Canadian Chamber of Commerce: http://www.chamber.ca/
- Flexibility regarding filing Taxes: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/03/canadas-covid-19-economic-response-plan-support-for-canadians-and-businesses.html#Flexibility_for_Tax-filers
- The Conference Board of Canada – COVID 19 Impacts: https://www.conferenceboard.ca/insights/covid-19
- Alberta Gaming and Liquor Corporation information for businesses: www.aglc.ca/covid-19
- Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce: https://www.reddeerchamber.com/news/details/chamber-covid-19-update
- Community futures has also put together a link to information: https://mailchi.mp/532ed81895de/covid-19-update-4431122
We understand that many business owners and entrepreneurs are anxious about how to get the help you need in the face of COVID-19. Here are a few good places to start:
- Visit the website for businesses for information about supporting your employees and your business. It will be constantly updated as the COVID-19 crisis evolve.
- Download the Canada Business App to find tailored supports to address your specific needs and questions about COVID-19.
- Consult the Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s pandemic preparedness guide to help prepare your business in the days and weeks to come.
- Contact your bank. Canada’s banks have made a commitment to support businesses and individuals through these difficult times in a responsible, fair, and compassionate way. To help provide some stability for businesses through this time of uncertainty, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) is lowering the Domestic Stability Buffer requirement, releasing more than $300 billion of additional lending capacity for Canadian financial institutions.
- Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) - COVID 19 Small Business Help Desk - https://www.cfib-fcei.ca/en/small-business-resources-dealing-covid-19 CFIB is Canada’s largest small business association with 110,000 members across all provinces and
- CME(Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters) resources at https://cme-mec.ca/coronavirus-covid-19-resources/ Easy to follow COVID19 safety guides https://cme-mec.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/CME-Made-Safe-COVID-19-H-S-Safety-Tips-Disinfection-High-Touch-Areas-FINAL-WEB.pdf
- Alberta Women Entrepreneurs (AWE)–enabling women to build successful businesses is providing free remote supports:
It is also vital for Canadian businesses to have contingency plans in place to manage potential financial risk. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has developed a comprehensive preparedness guide for businesses in the face of COVID-19.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business is also providing information to help businesses through these difficult times.
Business Development Bank of Canada has a public-source toolkit, available here: https://www.bdc.ca/en/articles-tools/entrepreneur-toolkit/templates-business-guides/pages/business-continuity-guide-templates-entrepreneurs.aspx#
If you are interested in offering support during this Covid 19 emergency, please provide details on the product or service on Alberta Purchasing Connection’s Emergency Response Database.
Link Here to online form for offers of support or donations from Albertans /companies.
Should there be an emergency requirement for the product or service, the company will be contacted by a representative of the Government of Alberta.
For more information on Government of Canada supports for Covid 19 please go to https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html
If you are a Canadian manufacturer or business that can assist Canada in meeting the need for medical supplies, the federal government is requesting your help.
The Government of Canada is looking to hear from anyone that:
- Manufactures in Canada and/or has ready access to necessary inputs through their supply chain
- Has equipment or facilities that can be rapidly re-tooled to meet medical needs, including for personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, masks and surgical gowns, sanitizer, wipes, ventilators, and other medical equipment/supplies
- Has skilled workers who are able to respond and who could be available for work in the current circumstances
If you can help, you are encouraged to send a short summary of your offer to:
On behalf of Red Deer County Economic Development Services, please know that we are here for you during these trying and difficult times. Our website www.growrdcounty.ca will be updated regularly in order to provide you with the latest information and resources available.