From the Desk of the CEO...
December arrives tomorrow, a bit later than the winter weather over the early part of this week. As the holiday shopping season develops, the Chamber is excited to continue our Shop Local Brantford-Brant initiative highlighting retailers, services, and hospitality businesses in our area where your shopping dollars will go further this season.

As more activities return and we move indoors, our rapid screening kits program continues to be popular.

Last week, we were pleased to host the return of the 15th Annual Wine, Women, and Shopping Event, with several great vendors, live music, our Town Crier in his 29th year, a fantastic venue and hospitality, and a hilarious set from local comedian Graham Chittenden.
Next week, we look forward to holding our annual Christmas Open House at The Rope Factory Event Hall, from 5:00-8:00 pm, with safe operating protocols in place. Please register in advance here!

Finally, I would like to acknowledge the help and support of Lorie Crisp, who has been active behind the scenes in the office and virtually for the past year, supporting a number of process and system improvements, communications, and our rapid screening kit program, among many other projects. Lorie is a veteran of the Chamber network in Ontario and will be retiring again for at least a few months. Thank you, Lorie!

Hope to see you safely next week! 

Thank you,

Government of Canada Unveils Three New Support Programs for Business, Extends Hiring Program and Worker Benefits
The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, introduced Bill C-2 in Parliament to implement the recently announced measures. This bill would:
  • Extend the Canada Recovery Hiring Program until May 7, 2022, for eligible employers with current revenue losses above 10% and increase the subsidy rate to 50%. The extension would help businesses continue to hire back workers, increase hours, and create the additional jobs Canada needs for a robust recovery.
  • Deliver targeted support to businesses still facing significant pandemic-related challenges. Support would be available through three streams:
  • Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program, which would provide support through wage and rent subsidies to, for example, hotels, tour operators, travel agencies, and restaurants, with a subsidy rate of up to 75%. The types of business that would be eligible are detailed in the proposed legislation and in the backgrounder associated with today’s announcement.
  • Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program, which would provide support through wage and rent subsidies to other businesses that have faced deep losses, with a subsidy rate of up to 50%.
  • Local Lockdown Program, which would provide businesses that face temporary new local lockdowns up to the maximum amount available through the wage and rent subsidy programs.

To ensure workers continue to have support and that no one is left behind, the proposed legislation would:
  • Extend the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit and the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit until May 7, 2022, and increase the maximum duration of benefits by 2 weeks. This would extend the caregiving benefit from 42 to 44 weeks and the sickness benefit from 4 to 6 weeks.
  • Establish the Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit which would provide $300 a week in income support to eligible workers who are directly impacted by a COVID-19-related public health lockdown in their region up until May 7, 2022. Eligible workers would be able to apply to receive this support retroactively from October 24, 2021.

Rapid Testing Kits Statistics
As of November 29th, 2021, the Chamber of Commerce has successfully served 346 local businesses across Brantford-Brant in its mission to keep businesses open in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This initiative will continue into March of 2022 and is free of charge. If you are interested in obtaining rapid tests for your business, please visit the Chamber website to learn more and schedule a time to pick up your kits as we are operating by appointment only.

Please keep in mind that test results must be accurately reported weekly in order to receive more kits.
FREE Resources to Gain or Retain for New Skills Through LinkedIn
Whether you’re underemployed, unemployed, looking to change careers, or gain or retrain for new skills, LinkedIn Learning can help you upskill quickly and get new micro-credentials on your resume and LinkedIn Profile.
The Ontario Chamber of Commerce is proud to partner with LinkedIn to provide this important FREE resource to its members.

The Chamber of Commerce Brantford-Brant is hosting a testimonial contest where participants can shout-out their favourite local business for a chance to WIN a $100 gift card to local restaurants like Devlin's Country Bistro and Catering, Hudson Public, Sociable Kitchen and Tavern, Big Smoke Burger, and Mercasa Little Italy Eatery.

Contestants will be entered to win a prize each time their testimonial is published to our social media platforms. If YOUR business receives a shout-out, we will publish a paid social media post about your business to get your name out there!

To submit a testimonial, head to our website. For any additional information, please contact
Welcome New Members!
Shop Local Advertisement Slots Are Filling Up Quickly!
If you are interested in promoting your business through the Chamber's Shop Local program, be sure to get in touch with as soon as possible, as spaces are filling up quickly. As a reminder, these are the services we are offering to local businesses who wish to get involved:

  • Professionally shot and edited videos at the location of your business
  • Free social media shout-outs
  • Paid social media spotlights all about your business and the products and/or services you offer
  • Testimonials
Additional COVID-19 Resources
Recovery Activation Program helping local businesses go digital. Click here to learn more and apply
PD27 10% Temporary Wage Subsidy Self-identification Form for Employers. Click here
Government of Canada Covid-19 Alert App: click here to download
Support for your business from the Government of Canada. Click here to find out which supports best fit your business
Support for Individuals from the Government of Canada. Click here to find out which supports best fit your business
Business Resilience Service phoneline: call 1-866-989-1080 to connect with a business advisor from the accounting profession. The service is available 7 days/week from 8 am – 8 pm ET
Canadian Emergency Business Account (CEBA); This $55 billion program provides interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits. Click here to apply
Develop your Workplace Safety Plan with tools from the Government of Ontario here.
For the most up-to-date provincial & federal programs, take a look at our website.
Chamber of Commerce Brantford-Brant