Small business recovery resources

  • Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)
    The Business Credit Availability Program’s goal is to help Canadian businesses obtain financing during this current period of uncertainty. Export Development Canada and Business Development Bank of Canada will provide more than $65 million in direct lending and other types of financial support at market rates to businesses with viable business models whose access to financing would otherwise be restricting.

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  • Business Information Line: Stop the Spread
    The Province has launched a toll-free line 1-888-444-3659 to provide support for Ontario businesses who have questions about the province’s recent emergency order to close at risk work places. If you have questions about essential versus non-essential businesses, assistance is available from Monday to Sunday from 8:30-5pm. 

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  • Canada's Economic Response Plan
    The government of Canada has created the ‘Economic Response Plan’ to help businesses. To learn more about the federal financial relief program the link below.

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  • Update - Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA)
    The Government of Canada created the Canada Emergency Business Account, which have been implemented by eligible financial institutions, in cooperation with Export Development Canada (EDC). This $25 billion program provides interest free loans of up to $40 000 to small businesses or non-profits, to help cover operational costs. As of October 2020, interest free loans have been expanded by an additional $20,000, and have been extended to December 31, 2020. Additionally, businesses who repay half of their loan by December 2022 will be eligible for 50% loan forgiveness.

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    Here are links to the CEBA application forms with the following banks:

    Bank of Montreal (BMO)
    Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC)
    Laurentian Bank
    National Bank of Canada
    Royal Bank of Canada (RBC)
    Scotiabank
    Toronto Dominion (TD)

  • NEW - Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy
    The Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy provides simple and easy-to-access rent and mortgage support to qualifying organizations affected by COVID-19. This new iteration of rent assistance is paid directly to tenants, until June 2021, on a sliding scale, covering up to 65% of rent. Additionally, if your business has been affected by specific public health restrictions, you are eligible to an additional 25% of rent coverage.

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  • Update - Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy
    The Government of Canada has announced an up to 75% wage subsidy for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020. Furthermore a new 100% refund for certain employer-paid contributions to Employment Insurance and the Canada Pension Plan. This will also covers the period employees are on leave with pay for which the employer is eligible to claim the wage subsidy for those employees. In October 2020, the Wage subsidy program was extended until June 2021.

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  • Canada Summer Jobs Program
    The Canada Summer Jobs Program provides opportunity to youth to develop and improve skills within the not-for–profit, small business and public sectors. Their have been significant alterations to the program to help employers cover the hourly wages for each of these employees. Up to 100% of the hourly territorial or provincial minimum wage.

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  • Changes to Hydro Rates
    Effective March 24, 2020, the Ontario government has suspended time-of-use electricity rates for the next 45 days. This means that electricity prices will be held to the off-peak rate of 10.1 cents-per-kilowatt-hour. This new price will be available 24/7 to all Ontarians. This will result in a 50% rate reduction compared to the on peak rate. This discount will be applied automatically to electricity bills. 

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  • COVID-19 Residential Relief Fund (CRRF)
    The province is providing $40 million specifically to support residential service providers through the COVID-19 Residential Relief Fund.(CRRF) These funds will help manage the health and safety of children, youth and adults supported in residential settings, as well as the staff that support them. The CRRF can be used to cover the exceptional costs during these uncertain times, such as additional staff compensation, protective equipment, etc. 

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  • COVID-19: Tackling the Barriers
    Ontario’s new initiative, COVID-19 Tackling the Barriers, seeks to help businesses seeking to retool production to meet health care needs, or businesses learning to operate in these new challenging times by allowing them to request temporary rule changes. The government recognizes that these changing times have brought on new challenges for business, so they are accepting submissions for those requesting temporary rule changes to enable them to stay open and keep fighting.

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  • Economic and Financial Help
    The Government of Canada is working diligently to help all individuals and businesses affected by COVID-19, who now face financial uncertainty and hardship. Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan will provide $27 billion in direct support to Canadians, workers and businesses. For a comprehensive look at all the measures covered in the 'Economic Response Plan,' click the link below.

    COVID-19 Economic Response Plan



  • Essential Service List
    The Ontario Government has created a comprehensive list of what exactly being an essential service entails.For those who still have questions about what will be open or impacts to your business or employment, you can call the ‘Stop the Spread’ phone line @ 1-888-444-3659.

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  • GoodWill Career Centres
    GoodWill is here to support businesses and people in the community by offering remote services for job seekers and employers during COVID-19. GoodWill Career solutions are there to provide employer solutions, job postings, as well as information on wage subsidies and Canada/Ontario Job Grants. 
    You can contact employmentservices@goodwillonline.ca or @ 905-526-8488 ext 1307.

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  • Ontario Action Plan
    The Ontario Action plan is a $17 billion package, of which $10 billion was allocated to support people and businesses to improve cash flows. By deferring tax payments, for WSIB, education property tax or general tax deferrals, the provincial government is constantly reassessing how it can best ease the stress put on people and small business. 

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  • Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (OCECRA)
    The Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program (OCECRA), provides forgivable loans to eligible commercial property owners experiencing rent shortfalls because their small business tenants have been heavily impacted by COVID-19. To receive the loan, property owners will be required to reduce the rental cost of small business tenants for April to June 2020 by at least 75 %, and commit to an eviction moratorium for 3 months. This program is run in partnership between the federal and provincial/territorial governments.

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  • Ontario Non-Profit Network (ONN)
    The Ontario Non-Profit Network’s goal is to advocate for non-profits & charities directly with the provincial government. Whether it’s lobbying for better support or keeping organizations up to date with new laws and their implications, the ONN has created a dedicated webpage to track all changes affecting non-profits and charity groups due to Covid-19.

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  • Re-Opening Ontario
    Re-opening Ontario during the COVID-19 outbreak will take place in 3 Stages. The provincial government will closely monitor public health during the implementation of each stage, before deciding when subsequent stages begin.  A basic description of each stage is:
    • Stage 1: Allows the opening of businesses which can immediately meet or modify operations to meet public health guidance and occupational health and safety requirements.(Stage 1 of re-opening began on May 19, 2020.)
    • Stage 2: Opening more workplaces, based on risk assessment, which may include service industries, and additional office and retail workplaces.
    • Stage 3: Opening all workplaces responsibly.

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  • Restaurant and Food Services Health Guide
    The Ontario Government has compiled a list of the best practices and information to help keep employers and workers in the food industry safe and healthy during COVID-19. If you have questions about what practices you should be taking, from sanitation, scheduling, physical distancing, signage, etc. you can find ideas here.

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  • Tax Filing Extension
    The 2019 Income Tax filling date has been deferred until June 1, 2020, with balances deferred until August 31 with no accrual of interest or penalties. You can read more about changing tax filling and payment deadlines by clicking the link below.

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  • Workplace PPE Supplier Directory
    The Ontario Government has compiled a list of companies that sell personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies to keep employees and customers safe. Businesses can find PPE suppliers by clinking the link below.

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  • Workplace Safety Guidelines
    The Ontario Government has assembled sector-specific guidelines and posters to help protect workers, customers and the general public from COVID-19. Businesses can use this resource to understand and promote important public health guideline during the outbreak.

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  • Work Sharing Program Extension
    Work Share is a program designed to help employers and employees avoid layoffs, when there is a shift in normal business activity, beyond the employer’s control. Work sharing involves employees getting income support for those eligible for employment insurance benefits, while the employer recovers. Workers agree to a reduced work schedule and share available work over a period of time. The federal work-sharing program has been extended form 38 weeks to 76 weeks.

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Learn about resources available for Ontario businesses with fewer than 100 employees.

For information on how we are helping businesses of all sizes, visit COVID-19: Help for businesses in Ontario.