Canadian Small Businesses, Restaurants Call for Extension of Government Pandemic Benefits

Canadian business leaders are calling on the federal government to extend COVID-19 benefits for small business and food service operators, saying moving ahead with plans to end the wage and rent subsidies on Oct. 23 will pull the safety net out from under struggling business owners, the Financial Post reported. In a letter shared with Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, the Canada Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) urged the federal government to extend benefits such as the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) to Nov. 20. The organization is also asking the government to work alongside members of parliament to extend the Canada Recovery Hiring program, CEWS, and CERS to the end of March 2022, bring back 75 per cent maximum wage and rent subsidies to all sectors of the economy and include new businesses that opened their doors after the pandemic began, among other measures. Restaurants Canada has issued a similar call to action, requesting the federal government extend benefits to 2022 to ensure food service businesses can survive the pandemic. Read more.