Every Friday, we publish a weekly update on COVID-19 and its effect on business. View our COVID-19 resources and daily webinars here.
Prime Minister Announces Support for Research Staff in Canada
As provincial governments continue to announce plans for restarting the economy, the federal government has new support measures to support research staff in Canada. Per the Government of Canada website:
From life-saving cancer treatments to clean technologies that protect our environment, thousands of research staff in Canada are driving discoveries and innovations that support our well-being and our economy. When we need them the most, many members of Canada’s academic research community have been forced to temporarily suspend their work due to COVID-19. To ensure they can keep their jobs, safeguard their research, and continue their important work after this crisis, the Government of Canada is stepping up to support them.
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, has announced $450 million in funding to help Canada’s academic research community during the COVID-19 pandemic. The investment will:
- Provide wage supports to universities and health research institutes, so they can retain research staff who are funded from industry or philanthropic sources and are unable to access some of the government’s existing COVID-19 support measures. This would apply even if their work has been temporarily suspended. The government will provide up to 75 percent per individual, with a maximum of $847 per week.
- Support universities and health research institutes to maintain essential research-related activities during the crisis, and to ramp back up to full research operations once physical distancing measures are lifted. This will cover up to 75 percent of total eligible costs, and will support activities such as the safe storage of dangerous substances, and restarting data sets that were interrupted during the pandemic.
This investment is part of the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, which has helped protect Canadian jobs, and committed billions in support to Canadians and businesses facing hardship as a result of the pandemic. It will help sustain Canada’s research excellence and protect our research talent, in support of the COVID-19 response and the post-pandemic economic recovery.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Speaks with Premiers on Continued Efforts to Address the Impacts of COVID-19
First Ministers discussed the imperative nature of COVID-19 testing and contact tracing for a successful restart of the Canadian economy. During the discussion, the federal government inquired how it can better support provinces and territories in this regard.
Per the Government of Canada website:
First Ministers discussed current restrictions at the Canada-United States border to protect the health of Canadians while allowing for the movement of essential goods and services. The Prime Minister highlighted ongoing close collaboration with the United States and committed to keeping premiers informed on border measures. First Ministers agreed on the need to maintain strong public health measures at the border, in particular as economies start to gradually restart.
First Ministers also discussed personal protective equipment and the ongoing steps they are taking to gradually restart the economy, and confirmed that protecting the health and safety of all Canadians remains the top priority. The Prime Minister raised the importance of municipalities in the gradual reopening across the country.
All First Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to addressing COVID-19 through a Team Canada effort. The Government of Canada continues to take a whole-of-government, comprehensive, and coordinated approach to respond to COVID-19.
While the coronavirus continues to spread quickly, it is important to remember that only a small percentage of patients need special treatment to recover. Trusted health experts continue to emphasize that the general population shouldn’t panic and should instead focus on practicing proper hygiene, such as hand-washing and refraining from touching the facial area.
- World Health Organization: Q&A on coronavirus (article)
- World Health Organization: How to protect yourself against COVID-19 (video)
- World Health Organization: Getting your workplace ready for COVID-19 (pdf document)
- McKinsey & Company: COVID-19: Implications for Business (article)
- Government of Canada: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) (updates, resources on travel, updates, Canada’s response, etc.)
- World Health Organization: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public (in-depth resources)
- Government of Canada Economic Response Plan
- BDC’s Relief for Canadian Business Owners
- Coronavirus: Leading Through the Crisis
- Government of Canada Announces new Domestic Transportation Measures
- BDC Capital Bridge Financing Program