Good Afternoon TIAO members,
On April 19th, Federal Minister of Finance, Chrystia Freeland will present her first budget to the House of Commons, which will set the economic priorities for the Federal Government. Whilst the budget is likely to be dominated by COVID-19, what is or isn’t included could have a major impact on the future of the tourism and hospitality industry in Ontario and across Canada.
The unprecedented damage inflicted by COVID-19 on our industry has been well documented in terms of lost revenues, lay-offs and sadly business closures. Twelve months of government mandated closures and restrictions have crippled our industry through no fault of their own.
However, we know the devastation could have been even more severe if the industry had not come together to campaign and win support programs such as the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS). Both of these programs are slated to come to an end in June, however, with international borders still closed and significant restrictions on operational capacity in place, we know it is vital that both programs are renewed and extended.
TIAO is a member of the Coalition of Hardest Hit Businesses (CHHB), the CHHB is an industry-driven group of over 100 stakeholders representing a variety of sectors including tourism, travel, arts and culture, events and festivals, accommodations and hospitality.
Last week CHHB released survey information that detailed that 60% of tourism and hospitality businesses would have closed without the support of CEWS or CERS in year one of the pandemic and are therefore calling for Minister Freeland to take action to support the tourism and hospitality industry and announce the following in her budget through;
- An extension and enhancement of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) at 75% targeting hard hit industries until the end of 2021; and
- An extension and enhancement of the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) for hard hit businesses, including deeper support for medium-sized businesses, until the end of 2021.
You can add your voice to the campaign by clicking here to send a letter to your local Member of Parliament calling on them to ask the Minister Freeland to give businesses the certainty they need to plan for the future.
If you have any questions about the campaign or would like further information then please don’t hesitate to get in contact.
Thank you for your support,
Vice-President, Policy and Government Affairs