In this challenging and constantly changing business environment, the West Niagara Chambers of Commerce want to support our Members by providing relevant and up-to-date information. This includes government announcements and support programs, resources, webinars, surveys, and other important updates.

This is a collaborative email to share information that applies to our memberships at large, sent on behalf of the Grimsby Chamber, Lincoln Chamber, and West Lincoln Chamber.

Cost-Share Funding for Food and Beverage Processors and Other Businesses
The Canadian Agricultural Partnership (the Partnership) provides cost-share funding support to processors and other businesses (animal health, commercializers, and primary agri-food businesses). Funding is available for key priority areas, which include: economic development and protection and assurance.

Applications for this program will be accepted in two phases.

The first phase of this new intake will support projects that will enhance economic development and food safety in the sector. Applications for phase one will be accepted starting on August 5, 2021, until September 2, 2021.

The second phase of the intake will open in September for targeted projects to improve labour productivity, efficiency and reduce waste.

A webinar providing an overview of this food and beverage processor intake will be held on Monday August 16, at 9:30 am. Sign up using the webinar registration form. This session will be recorded and available for those not able to attend.

Program details, including how to apply and program guides, are available here for Processors and here for Other Business.

Other links:
Ontario unveils back-to-school plan for September
All students will be able to return to the classroom full time this September under the Ontario government’s highly anticipated back-to-school plan.

The 26-page plan says elementary students and secondary students will attend school in-person five days per week, for the first time in months.

Remote learning will remain an option for parents and students who don’t feel comfortable returning to the classroom.
Free Health and Safety Training for Small Businesses
The Ontario government is investing $10.5 million to prevent workplace illnesses and injuries by improving health and safety awareness and practices at up to 60,000 small businesses across the province over the next three years.

All small businesses with 6 to 19 employees are required to have a health and safety representative and can apply for this training. The Small Business Health and Safety Training Program will provide free online training to Health and Safety Representatives to keep workers safe in the retail, construction, health care, accommodation and food services, and other sectors.

The Ontario government will cover the $25 cost of registration for the e-learning training course for an appointed health and safety representative and will reimburse small businesses $150 towards the time that representative is away from work for training. Read more HERE.

About the Training Course: The Health and Safety Representative Basic Training course is an eLearning program that provides instruction on the powers, functions, and duties of the workplace health and safety representative.

Reimbursement: Small businesses with 6-19 employees who complete the training program from July 15, 2021, onwards are eligible for reimbursement. To be reimbursed, small businesses must be a registered business that operates in Ontario and provide proof that their appointed health and safety representative has completed the training course, in the form of the course completion certificate obtained from WSPS. Businesses can apply up to two times, with a second allowance permitted for staff turnover. Franchises of the same corporation with unique business numbers are also eligible for funding.
Ontario Training Young People for Technology Jobs in Niagara
The Ontario government is investing over $2 million to provide over 90 youth in the Niagara Region with free, paid training for high-demand information technology (IT) jobs. Participants will get practical experience by assisting local businesses with their technology-based needs to help them recover by expanding online. This is part of the government’s effort to help those that have been most affected by the pandemic get connected to good local jobs so they can help build our province’s future prosperity.

The Town of Lincoln is partnering with the non-profit training organization Civiconnect, at a Youth Skills Studio in Beamsville, Ont., to offer at least 90 Niagara-area youth ages 15-29 with 15 weeks of in-class and on-the-job learning. Technical skills taught include IT marketing, web development, and systems administration as well as soft job skills such as communication, decision-making and teamwork.

The program consists of five weeks of classroom instruction followed by a paid 10-week job placement with one of 75 small to medium-sized businesses in the Town of Lincoln and Niagara Region. The project can also deliver training virtually to individuals who require childcare supports to work from home.

While the first wave of training is in progress, additional training is available in sessions taking place September 13 – December 24, 2021, and January 10 – April 22, 2022. Participants are each paid approximately $10,000 during the program.

Interested candidates from the Niagara Region can apply for the training by contacting Civiconnect at:
Government of Canada
Apply for Funding to Become an Intermediary under the Apprenticeship Service Program  
The Apprenticeship Service supports employers to hire new first-year apprentices in 39 Red Seal trades. Call for Proposals will provide funding to intermediaries that have the capacity to support SMEs to hire new, first-year apprentices by:

  • Providing a financial incentive to SMEs to hire new, first-year Red Seal apprentices in one or more of the 39 construction and/or manufacturing Red Seal trades
  • Offering additional supports to SMEs to recruit and encourage employment of first-year apprentices, such as:
  • Help to onboard apprentices
  • Help to create an inclusive workplace
  • Providing workplace diversity and sensitivity training
  • Support to hire and retain apprentices from key groups
  • Monitoring and reporting on the use of that funding
  • Evaluating and reporting on results

The call for proposals is open until September 14, 2021.
Easing of border measures
Effective August 9, 2021, international flights carrying passengers will be permitted to land at the following five additional Canadian airports:

  • Halifax Stanfield International Airport;
  • Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport;
  • Ottawa Macdonald–Cartier International Airport;
  • Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport; and
  • Edmonton International Airport.

These airports, in cooperation with the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), the Canada Border Services Agency, and Transport Canada, are working to implement the measures necessary to safely welcome international passengers, as soon as conditions dictate.

Fully Vaccinated TFWs entering Canada
Effective August 9, 2021, the Government of Canada is adjusting its post-arrival testing strategy for fully vaccinated travellers. The impact of the new border measures is outlined in the table below and identifies testing requirements for TFWs arriving into Canada, specific to the 13 exempted NOC’s in the agriculture, agri-food, fish, and seafood sectors.
More information on the easing of border measures can be found on the Government of Canada’s website, including updated FAQs available in English, French, and Spanish.
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The West Niagara Chambers of Commerce are dedicated to supporting local businesses during the pandemic through advocacy, connecting you to information and resources, offering a space to develop a support system of Chamber peers, and more. Please reach out to Rebecca Shelley (Grimsby), Lindsey Hendriks (Lincoln), or Denise Potter (West Lincoln) if there is anything our Chambers can do to assist your organization during these difficult times.

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Grimsby & District Chamber of Commerce

Executive Director

Chamber of Commerce

Executive Director

West Lincoln
Chamber of Commerce

Executive Director

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