COVID-19 Info and Resources

COVID-19 | Support and Resources

2021/01/10

Looking for guidance for your business during the current COVID-19 situation? 

The WTC Winnipeg has created the following list of resources  to help navigate available support programs. Our team of business and trade advisors are also here to answer your questions. Contact us by email at covid@wtcwinnipeg.com or by phone at 204.253.4888 or 1.800.665.2019 (toll free).

 

Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund

New initiative in support of Black business owners and entrepreneurs through the Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund that will provide loans of between $25,000 and $250,000. 

The Loan Fund will begin accepting applications in May 2021. More information to come. 

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

The government has announced a proposed extension of the current CEWS rates until June 5, 2021. 

The Canadian government is covering up to 75% of an employee’s wages for qualifying eligible employers to keep and re-hire employees and avoid layoffs. The Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers is another subsidy available to employer. Learn more here: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/subsidy/temporary-wage-subsidy.html#h1 

How to apply:

More Information:

Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA)
All CEBA applicants have until June 30, 2021 to apply for $60,000 CEBA loan or the $20,000 expansion. If you have already applied for CEBA and have questions, please contact the CEBA Call Centre at 1-888-324-4201.

Eligibility:

  • The Borrower is a Canadian operating business in operation as of March 1, 2020 and has a federal tax registration.
  • The Borrower’s total employment income paid in the 2019 calendar year was between Cdn.$20,000 and Cdn.$1,500,000. For applicants with CAD  $20,000 or less in total employment income paid in the 2019 calendar year:
    • The Borrower has a Canada Revenue Agency business number and has filed a 2018 or 2019 tax return.
    • The Borrower has eligible non-deferrable expenses between Cdn.$40,000 and Cdn.$1,500,000. Eligible non-deferrable expenses could include costs such as rent, property taxes, utilities, and insurance. Expenses will be subject to verification and audit by the Government of Canada.
  • The Borrower has an active business chequing/operating account with the Lender, which is its primary financial institution. This account was opened on or prior to March 1, 2020 and was not in arrears on existing borrowing facilities, if applicable, with the Lender by 90 days or more as at March 1, 2020.
  • The Borrower has not previously used the Program and will not apply for support under the Program at any other financial institution.
  • The Borrower acknowledges its intention to continue to operate its business or to resume operations.
  • The Borrower agrees to participate in post-funding surveys conducted by the Government of Canada or any of its agents.

How to apply:

Business owners can apply now through their banks and credit unions.

More Information:

Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

More Information:

The government of Canada – CERB – https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/cerb-application.html

Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

To learn more, visit: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/finance-and-investing/covid19-cecra-small-business

Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS)

The government has announced a proposed extension of the current CERS and Lockdown Support rate until June 5, 2021. 

The Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) provides a direct and easy-to-access rent and mortgage subsidy of up to 65% of eligible expenses to qualifying businesses, charities and non-profits. This support is available directly to tenants. 

Lockdown SupportQualifying organizations that have been significantly restricted by a mandatory public health order issued by a qualifying public health authority can receive an additional 25% of rent support through the Lockdown Support. 

The combined effect of the rent subsidy and the Lockdown Support is that hard-hit businesses, non-profits and charities subject to a lockdown can receive rent support of up to 90%. 

More Information: 

Canada United Small Business Relief Fund - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

Created and launched by RBC, Canada United is a national movement to support local businesses in communities across the country. The actions of Canadians during the campaign helped establish the Canada United Small Business Relief Fund (CUSBRF) to help small businesses offset the cost of expenses required to reopen safely or adopt digital technologies to move more of their business online. Successful applicants will receive a relief grant of up to $5,000.

Eligibility:

  • Applicants do not need to be a member of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) to qualify
  • Small to medium-sized (SME) companies from all sectors and all regions of Canada
  • For greater clarity, both For-Profit and Not-For-Profit organizations are eligible to apply but Government organizations, municipalities, charities and the chamber of commerce network are not eligible to apply
  • Be incorporated, or operating as a sole proprietor, in Canada as of March 1, 2020
  • No more than 75 employees
  • Have minimum annual sales of $200,000 and not more than $3,000,000
  • Have $1,000,000 of commercial general liability insurance
  • Not receiving any other contributions from public funds towards the specific activities contained in the funding application
  • Be in operation after September 1, 2020 (grant recipients must sign a declaration included in the approval letter to confirm)

How to apply:

Apply online https://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/5809871/Canada-United-Application-MB

More Information:

Canada Recovery Benefit

Open for applications. The government has announced a proposed extension to the CRB eligibility period limits. The change would allow eligible recipients to apply for a total of 19 periods (38 weeks) between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021. 

The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are directly affected by COVID-19 and are not entitled to Employment Insurance (EI) benefits. The CRB is administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). If you are eligible for the CRB, you can receive $1,000 ($900 after taxes withheld) for a 2-week period. 

More Information: 

Economic Support Grant Program - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

For additional details, please visit: https://winnipeg.ca/emergweb/covid-19/economic-support-grant.stm

Employment Insurance (EI)

Ongoing access to the Employment Insurance (EI) program is available for eligible workers who have lost their job. EI is designed to provide temporary financial support for those workers who have lost their job, are sick, pregnant, caring for a newborn or adopted child, caring for a family member who is seriously ill with a significant risk of death or providing care or support to a critically ill family member.

Temporary changes have been made to the Employment Insurance (EI) program to help you access EI benefits. These changes are in effect until September 2021. Go to EI benefits and leave to find the benefit type that applies to your situation. The following changes could apply to you:

  • the waiting period may be waived
  • a minimum unemployment rate of 13.1% applies to all regions across Canada:
    • if your region’s unemployment rate is higher than 13.1%, we’ll use the higher actual rate to calculate your benefits
  • you only need 120 insured hours to qualify for benefits because you’ll receive a one-time credit of:
    • 300 insured hours if you’re applying for regular benefits
    • 480 insured hours if you’re applying for sickness, maternity, parental or caregiving benefits
  • you’ll receive at least $500 per week before taxes, or $300 per week before taxes for extended parental benefits but you could receive more
  • if you qualify for regular benefits, you’ll be eligible for up to 50 weeks of benefits
  • if you’re applying for sickness benefits, you don’t need to get a medical certificate
  • if you’re a fisher, we’ll look at the earnings from your 2018, 2019 and 2020 summer or winter seasons to determine your benefit rate and establish your claim for the same season
  • if you’re registered for the self-employed program, you need to have made at least $5,000 in net earnings in 2020 to be eligible for benefits in 2021
  • if you received the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), the 52-week period to accumulate insured hours will be extended

More Information:

Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP)

The HASCAP is available until June 30, 2021. 

The Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP) provides businesses heavily impacted by COVID-19, access guaranteed, low-interest loans of $25,000 to $1 million to cover operational cash flow needs. 

HASCAP is available to businesses that operate in sectors such as tourism and hospitality, restaurants and those that primarily rely on in-person services. 

The program is available at some participating financial institutions. Other participating financial institutions will deploy the program progressively over the days that follow. 

More Information: 

Manitoba Bridge Grant - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

The Manitoba Bridge Grant – Stream A provides financial assistance of $15,000 to eligible Manitoba businesses and organizations that were required to fully close their premises to the public as a result of Manitoba COVID-19 Prevention Orders in effect as of November 12, 2020 or any revisions to those Orders. 

More Information:

Have more questions? Visit: https://www.gov.mb.ca/covid19/programs/bridge-grant.html

Manitoba Dine-in Relief Program - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

For more Information, visit the Manitoba Chamber of Commerce Dine-in Restaurant Relief Program Application web page: https://rrf.mbchamber.mb.ca/ 

Manitoba Gap Protection Program - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

Update: Businesses who received the Manitoba Gap Protection of $6,000 will no longer have to pay back the Gap Protection loan. This also apllies to Businesses who received both the Manitoba Gap Protection and any other federal assistance.

More Information:

Back to Work in Manitoba Wage Subsidy Program - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

The Back to Work Manitoba initiative is a hiring program designed to support Manitoba’s economic recovery by encouraging Manitoba employers to bring back their employees or take on new hires.

More Information: 

Manitoba Back to Work Program – https://manitoba.ca/covid19/restartmb/mbtwp.html 

Support for agriculture, farmers and food processing employers - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

Regional Relief and Recovery Funds (RRRF)

The Fund aims to help western Canadian businesses cope with the financial hardship resulting from COVID-19. The funds are divided in four different eligibility groups:

Funding over $40,000. Apply online (https://portal.wd-deo.ca/en-ca/form/?id=808eb560-cf90-ea11-a811-000d3af4a4ca)

More Information:

Regional Relief and Recovery Fundhttps://www.wd-deo.gc.ca/eng/20059.asp

Wage Funding Employment Programs from ECO Canada - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

Working with the federal government, ECO Canada offers employment funding programs for organizations to hire recent graduates in roles with an environmental focus:

  • Cleantech innovation and sustainable technology initiatives
  • Digital marketers aiming to promote environmental businesses
  • Developers that create apps or software related to environmental education
  • GHG specialists in charge of predictive modeling or the analysis of emissions
  • Drone operators that monitor remote well sites or wildlife corridors
  • GIS specialists that use software to analyze mapping data or databases that surround environmental monitoring
  • Analysts and IT specialists working with EHS data
  • Funding is open until December 31, 2020 – places are limited

ECO Canada employment funding programs were created to stimulate skill development, business growth and workforce advancement. Let ECO Canada help you do that. Applications take only 20 minutes.

Take the eligibility assessment and apply: https://www.eco.ca/employment-programs/

More Information:

Reach out to us at pathways@eco.ca with any questions or visit – https://www.eco.ca/employment-programs/youth-placement/natural-resources/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=wf_20&utm_content=ESAAwfYNR

More Provincial Support

For more information on provincial financial program, please visit the Manitoba Protection Plan – https://manitoba.ca/covid19/protection/index.html

More Federal Support

For more information on federal financial program, please visit Canada’s COVIS-19 Economic Response Plan – https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html

 

 

Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF)
  • The LEEFF program is meant to provide bridge financing to Canada’s largest employers, whose needs during the pandemic are not being met through conventional financing, in order to keep their operations going. The objective of this support is to help protect Canadian jobs, help Canadian businesses weather the current economic downturn, and avoid bankruptcies of otherwise viable firms where possible.
  • This support cannot be used to resolve insolvencies or restructure firms, nor will it provide financing to companies that otherwise have the capacity to manage through the crisis.

Eligibility:

  • The LEEFF program will be open to large for-profit businesses – with the exception of those in the financial sector – as well as certain not-for-profit businesses, such as airports, with annual revenues generally in the order of $300 million or higher.
  • To qualify for LEEFF support, eligible businesses must be seeking financing of about $60 million or more, have significant operations or workforce in Canada, and not be involved in active insolvency proceedings.
  • Recipients will need to commit to respect collective bargaining agreements and protect workers’ pensions. It will require strict limits to dividends, share buy-backs, and executive pay.
  • An assessment may be made of companies’ employment, tax, and economic activity in Canada, as well as its international organizational structure and financing arrangements.
  • The program will not be available to companies that have been convicted of tax evasion.
  • Recipient companies would be required to commit to publish annual climate-related disclosure reports consistent with the Financial Stability Board’s Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures, including how their future operations will support environmental sustainability and national climate goals.
  • Financing is intended to be applicable to all eligible sectors in a consistent manner.

How to apply:

Applications are available now through the Canada Enterprise Emergency Funding Corporation – https://www.cdev.gc.ca/home-ceefc/

More Information:

Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)

Through the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC), the new Business Credit Availability Program will increase the credit available to small, medium and large Canadian businesses, providing more than $65 billion in direct lending and other types of financial support. More information is available here – https://www.edc.ca/en/solutions/working-capital/bcap-guarantee.html

Downtown Winnipeg Biz Grant - Status: Closed

Applications are closed at this time.

More Information:

Downtown Winnipeg Biz – https://downtownwinnipegbiz.com/downtown-businesses-needing-support-through-the-pandemic-can-apply-for-a-1000-grant/ 

Farm Credit Canada COVID-19 Support Program

Farm Credit Canada (FCC) will augment credit available to farmers and the agri-food sector by $5 billion, including a deferral of principal and interest payments up to six months for existing loans or a deferral of principal payments up to 12 months, access to an additional credit line up to $500,000, secured by general security agreements or universal movable hypothec (Québec only). More information is available here – https://www.fcc-fac.ca/en/covid-19/program-details.html

Additional funding through regional development agencies, industrial research, and Heritage Canada

To help reach people and businesses who may not be able to receive funding through other programs and financial lenders, the federal government is also allocating an additional:

Applications for funding can be submitted directly to those organizations.

 

Funding for small and medium-sized Indigenous businesses and financial institutions

On March 18, the federal government provided up to $306.8 million in funding to help small- and medium-sized Indigenous businesses, and to support Aboriginal Financial Institutions that offer financing to these businesses.

The funding will allow for short-term, interest-free loans and non-repayable contributions through Aboriginal Financial Institutions, which offer financing and business support services to First Nations, Inuit and Métis businesses.

The program will be provided through Aboriginal Financial Institutions, and administered by the National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association and the Métis capital corporations in partnership with Indigenous Services Canada.

The funding will allow for interest-free loans, as well as non-repayable contributions, to help Indigenous businesses unable to access the government’s existing COVID-19 support measures. Additional funding will help Aboriginal Financial Institutions cover operational expenses, and help the National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association increase its operational capacity.

On May 21, the government announced an additional $75 million in funding for Indigenous organizations providing services to Indigenous peoples in urban centres and off reserve. This additional funding will support more community-based projects that address the critical needs of Indigenous populations during this crisis, including food security, mental health support services, and sanitation and protective equipment. It could also help with other needs, such as support for Elders, transportation, and educational materials for Indigenous children and youth.

Additional Resources

 

Provincial COVID-19 information:
Recovery and reopening
Personal Protective Equipment
Partners’ COVID-19 resource pages

Recovery and reopening
Federal and Provincial Programs
Human Resources
Additional Resources
Webinars and Online Training