Your Chamber Connection 
November Newsletter 

Issues & Insights: Together We Are Stronger
By Charla Robinson, Chamber President  

As outlined in last month's article, it has been a challenging year for small business owners with the introduction of numerous regulatory and legislative changes that will have a direct impact on the success of business operations.  Your Thunder Bay Chamber will always continue to push back against government directives that add costs that make it harder for businesses to succeed.  We are realistic enough to know that there are times when governments listen and adjust plans accordingly; as well as times when it feels like we are talking to a brick wall.  This month has shown us a little of both regarding Government response.  
Read more... 
In Case You Missed It
Ontario is seeking input on Employment and Labour Law Rules  
The Province is reviewing exemptions and exclusions Under the Employment Standards Act.  and is seeking public input to help make workplaces fairer for workers in industries that currently have exemptions, special rules or exclusions. 
Starting October 24, people across the province can have their say on important decisions related to employment standards such as wages, hours of work and public holidays. The first phase of consultations focuses on eight occupations currently exempt from minimum employment standards. 

Province Strengthens Representation in the North
Ontario passed the Representation Statute Law Amendment Act to improve representation for those living in the province's northern most communities.
The legislation will result in a total of four ridings  in Northern Ontario, where previously there were two. They include Kiiwetinoong, Mushkegowuk-James Bay, Timmins, and Kenora-Rainy River. Ontario will be consulting with affected communities to determine a final name for the new riding of Mushkegowuk-James Bay.
Helping Businesses Mitigate the Impact of Bill 148
The Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) and MNP, Canada's leading accounting firm, have partnered to release a comprehensive handbook for Ontario's business community that provides strategies to help businesses navigate the incoming changes from Bill 148 (Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act). The handbook, "Steering Through Change: A Handbook to Help Ontario Businesses Understand and Manage Bill 148" outlines the potential risks to employers from the incoming legislation and offers human resources and operational strategies to help businesses better understand what these changes will mean.

Local Employers Wanted 
The North Superior Workforce Planning Board, your Local Employment Planning Council, is gathering information from local employers in order to better understand the issues and challenges facing local businesses. The survey is designed to collect information on a range of workforce issues. 
Your input is essential to help
  • Inform the planning of education, employment and training programs and services
  • Ensure that local programs and services better align with local labour market requirements
  • Contribute to efforts of ensuring a highly skilled and trained workforce to sustain our Northern communities
Pl ease join us in welcoming the following companies that join ed the Chamber in October:

Member to Member (M2M) Discounts

Our enhanced Member-to-Member (M2M) Discount program facilitates Member-to-Member relationships and encourages shopping locally. This is an excellent opportunity to support your fellow Chamber members and promote your business.

Login to your Chamber Member Information Centre and click on the M2M Deals tab on the left side bar to add a discount for your business and visit our website for a detailed list of offerings. 
November Featured M2M Discounts 
Thunder Bay Olivine - Chamber Member discount: As a Chamber of Commerce Member, you receive 10% off any regular size bottle of Olive Oil or Balsamic Vinegar. 

Find all M2M discounts here.

Our Members are Online Retailers 
You can still support local and shop online. There are more and more business in Thunder Bay that provide online shopping including many of our members! #choosetbayfirst

Update your Full Time Employee Count

To ensure that you are getting the most out of your membership, login to your MIC account or contact the Chamber Office to update your count.    

Good News

This month's Good News highlights the following Chamber members:

City of Thunder Bay
Community Economic Development Commission
Confederation College 
Lakehead University
Northern Ontario School of Medicine
Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN)
Staal Foundation Open
Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre
Tom Jones Corporation
Read our Good News
Upcoming Events

'Tis the Season show and shop
Sunday, November 5th, Valhalla Inn
Presented by Home Outfitters
The Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce is pleased to introduce a spectacular new event!
Join us for a magical afternoon just as the holiday entertaining season begins. Thunder Bay's leading experts in fine foods, cocktails, fashion, home decor and guesting gifts will delight and inspire thousands of visitors with fashion shows, workshops, samples and featured inventory available for purchase.
For more information visit 
Member Morning 
Wednesday, November 8th, Afloat Therapy 
Join us for a Member Morning to learn about Thunder Bay's own float center!
Floatation therapy, also known as floating, sensory deprivation, or R.E.S.T (Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy) involves lying in a floatation tank with 10 inches of water, containing 1000lbs of epsom salts.  If you're as curious as we are about this unique Member, come on out for coffee and treats before you head to work!
This event is for Chamber Members only and is free of charge.
Know Your Power Thunder Bay 
Tuesday, November 14, Victoria Inn & Conference Centre 
11:30am -1:30pm
Join the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce for a lunch event on Tuesday, November 14, to learn about energy cost saving programs and incentives available to Ontario businesses. The event will bring together representatives from your local distribution company, natural gas distributor and the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO), along with businesses and community leaders from the region, to share information about available energy saving programs and how to enroll
November After Business: Northern Ontario School of Medicine
Wednesday, November 15, Balmoral Street Centre
Join us for our final  #AfterBiz  of 2017. A huge thank you to our After Business sponsor RBC for supporting us and these events, they would not be possible without you.  
YQT: Your Quarterly Training 
Tuesday, November 21, Chamber Boardroom
Come learn about your Chamber membership benefits at this FREE lunch meeting. We will provide lunch. 
Leaders Luncheon w/ Derek Nighbor, Forest Products Association of Canada 
Wednesday, December 6th, Italian Cultural Centre
Series Sponsor: Intercity Industrial Supply
Event Sponsor: Forest Products Association of Canada
Keynote Speaker: Derek Nighbor, President, FPAC
Northwestern Ontario's forestry sector is facing a  number of challenges and opportunities.  While the emerging bioeconomy & global trends to build ore with wood are before us, challenges related to Canada/U.S. trade, species at risk policies and new carbon-related costs are also upon us.The Forest Products Association of Canada believes we have an opportunity to find win-wins for both the environment and the economy. 
Pre-register online

This year the Thunder Bay Hot Topic Series by the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business & APEX saw 17 exhibitors and over 100 attendees from across the region. Conversations were had and partnerships buil t between Canadian companies and Aboriginal communities to launch businesses in urban and rural markets. The discussion addressed issues including the creation and alignment of shared goals, team building and resource maximization. A special thank you to the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business for partnering with us & our sponsors Tbaytel, and Thunder Bay Hydro for their generous support. 
The nominations for the 2018 Business Excellence Awards are now open. Every year 12 amazing business in Thunder Bay receive awards for their dedication to business & our community.

200 Syndicate Avenue South, Suite 102 | 807.624.2626 |