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Daily COVID-19 Update: March 30, 2020

Supports for Business

City Assessments Notices Delayed

Due to the challenges of the recent COVID-19 crisis and the impact on department operations, the City of Medicine Hat is extending the notice of assessment date. For Single Family Residential and Farmland, the mail date was February 28th with a notice of Assessment Date of March 6 and a complaint deadline of May 8th. However for Non-Residential and Multi-Family properties, the mailing date is now moved from April 9th to May 14, with a notice of assessment date of May 22nd and a complaint deadline of July 21st. The City will advise property owners further when tax notices are scheduled to be mailed. Read more.

More Details Yet to be Announced for Wage Subsidy

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced today that any Canadian businesses whose revenue has decreased by 30 per cent or more due to the pandemic will be eligible for the 75 per cent wage subsidy promised, regardless of the number of employees they have. This is after Friday’s announcement of the major increase to the wage subsidy for small- and medium-sized businesses, aimed at helping them keep employees on staff. Charities and not-for-profit organizations are also able to apply, as well as companies of all sizes. The emergency wage subsidy will be back-dated to March 15 and will be based on the first $58,700 earned, meaning up to $847 a week with more details being announced this week. See the Canadian Chamber of Commerce statement here.

Supports for Individuals

What does urgent care for optometrists and dentists mean?

COVID-19 has hit our province hard and fast, with that many professional organizations have made changes to their practices.  These changes ensure that we continue to work towards planking the curve, focus on patient safety, and provide those in our community experiencing urgent care needs an option for care outside of the ER

Optometric and dental practices have been deemed by the government of Alberta essential for emergency services.  We encourage individuals who are experiencing urgent care needs to call their service provider or visit their website for information on how to safely access care.  It is important to always call ahead, during this time it is necessary to limit face to face interactions.

Private practices have prepared for this, they have a plan in place and will be able to help provide appropriate care.  It is recommended that if you are unsure, please call your service provider before going to the emergency room, their teams can triage your concerns and offer advice.

Community Supports and Resources

Medicine Hat Transit Waives Fares

The city will be suspending transit fares indefinitely in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Effective immediately, no payment will be required for both regular and special transit passengers. All regular transit passengers will be allowed to enter buses through the rear door with front door access limited to those with mobility issues. Starting next week, weekday bus schedules will alternate to the Saturday schedule with weekends shifting to the Sunday schedule.

Domestic Travel Restrictions

As of noon today, any Canadian traveller who shows COVID-19 symptoms will be banned from boarding any domestic flights or trains, in an effort to limit the spread of the virus between provinces and cities.

Operating guide for continuing care

A new guide with mandated directions on how to respond to and prevent COVID-19 concerns and cases has been posted online for operators of continuing care facilities, seniors lodges, residential addiction treatment facilities and licensed facilities for person with disabilities.

More Support for the Homeless and Help for Women’s Shelters and Sexual Assault Centres

There has been increased support for Canadians experiencing homelessness and provision to help women and children fleeing violence. As announced on March 18, 2020, the Government of Canada will provide an additional $157.5 million to address the needs of Canadians experiencing homelessness. The government will also provide up to $50 million to women’s shelters and sexual assault centres, including facilities in Indigenous communities, to help with their capacity to manage or prevent an outbreak.

Support for counselling services for children and youth. 

As a result of school closures and reduced access to community resources, Kids Help Phone is experiencing increased demand for its 24/7 confidential online, telephone, and text counselling services across Canada. The Government of Canada will give $7.5 million in funding to Kids Help Phone to provide young people with the mental health support they need during this difficult time.

Funding for United Way Canada

The Government of Canada will contribute $9 million through United Way Canada for local organizations to support practical services to Canadian seniors. These services could include the delivery of groceries, medications, or other needed items, or personal outreach to assess individuals’ needs and connect them to community support.

Health Canada Warning

Health Canada is warning Canadians about the risks of buying health products, including drugs, natural health products, homeopathic products and medical devices that make false or misleading claims to prevent, treat or cure COVID-19. If you have purchased health products that claim to prevent, treat or cure COVID-19, stop using them immediately and consult a health care professional if you have any concerns. If you have any information on the potential false or misleading advertising or sale of products in Canada, report it. Find more information here.


Briefings with the Federal Government

We hosted our second call in a series of briefings with the government today. This was an update on the Canada-U.S. border and international trade. Our first call in the series was held on Friday and focused on federal employment and wage support programs. There will be additional briefings in the coming days and we will provide information as it becomes available. In the meantime, the Canadian Chamber is updating it’s FAQ document regularly here.

Canadian Business Resilience Network

In the coming days, you will hear more about the Canadian Business Resilience Network. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce established the Canadian Business Resilience Network to bring together its vast network of over 450 chambers of commerce and boards of trade and Canada’s leading business and industry associations to help the business community prepare, persevere and, ultimately, prosper as we collectively face the COVID-19 pandemic. 


New Resources

Government of Alberta Weekly Overview of Covid-19

The Alberta Government has put together an overview of the provincial government response to the COVID-19 outbreak from March 23 through 28.

Share Your Insights on Your Labour Force with StatsCan!

Statistics Canada is currently conducting a Labour Force Survey online or by telephone. This survey is critical to understanding the full impact of COVID-19 on businesses. This information is important to us as we develop policy options for governments to consider. Tomorrow is the deadline for the survey!

Conference Board of Canada Resources

Advice for employers dealing with COVID-19 webinar — Employment lawyers Andrew Shaw and Shyama Talukdar help you understand your obligations and give advice regarding workplace safety.


Share your stories and resources with us and on the YXH Business Support Group. and connect with us for any questions you have.

"Pivoting is not the end of the disruption process, but the beginning of the next leg of your journey." - Jay Samit


For more resources visit our COVID-19 page

On Demand Webinars

YXH Business Support (Recorded Facebook Live): Amy Zuk, F&S Safety Buzz, “Alberta Occupational Health & Safety Impacts in our Workplace During COVID-19”. Watch Now.

The Importance of Human Resources & Being Strategic When Your Business is Being Temporarily Impacted. Watch Now.

How to cope with the impacts of COVID-19 on your business. Watch Now.

Destination Canada: The Visitor Economy: Watch Now.

Rent Relief in a World of the Coronavirus: Watch Now.

Webinars Series from the Calgary Chamber of Commerce. Watch Now.

Webinar Series from the Conference Board of Canada, Mental Health and COVID-19. Watch Now.

For the CPHR Alberta Webinar Series: HR Pandemic Essentials, click here.

For the Conference Board of Canada Webinar Series, Mental Health and COVID-19, click here.

Upcoming Webinars

March 31: Workplace Safety Issues & COVID-19. Register here.

March 31: Maintaining Mental Fitness - Gratitude. Register here.

March 31: Managing Stress in a Changing Environment, Dale Carnegie. Register here.

March 31: Resilience and Crisis Management. Register here.

March 31: How to Pivot Your Message During a Crisis. Register here.

April 1: A Conversation with the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade. Register here.

April 1: The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages. Click to Join

April 1: Business & Economic Recovery during the COVID-19 Crisis. Register here.

April 1: Business Planning in Uncertain Times. Register here.

April 1: Leading and Laughing During These Turbulent Times. Register here.

April 2: Alberta's Economic Outlook. Register here.

April 2: Temporary Layoffs and Frustration of Contract. Register here.

April 3: Handling HR During Crisis. Register here.

April 3: Managing Stress in a Changing Environment, Dale Carnegie. Register here.

April 6: Financing Options for Small Business. Register here.

April 7: Managing a Remote Workforce. Register here.

April 7, 2020: Preparing Your Startup for the Impact of COVID-19. Register here.

April 13: : Business Development in Trying Times. Register here.

Alberta Fishing Education Program - Now Free for a Limited Time

This program offers a comprehensive educational experience. Divided into eight modules plus a final exam this course includes Alberta Fishing Regulations and Management; Identification of Alberta Game Fish; Fishing Equipment; Fishing Techniques; Preparing and Cooking Your Catch; Safety While Fishing; Ethical Behaviour; Legal Responsibilities. Click here.

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