A Federal election has been called and we are calling on all party leaders to take immediate action and commit proportionate resources to save small businesses and help preserve the main streets and urban prosperity of Toronto - the greatest financial engine of modern Canada.

After all, even though we’re done with COVID, it’s clear with the Delta variant and a potential fourth wave, the pandemic isn’t done with us yet.

From Locked Down to Locked Out

On November 23, 2020, as a result of COVID-19, businesses in Toronto entered what would turn out to be one of the longest lockdowns in the world.

Initially, for seven months followed by rolling lockdowns, small business owners of restaurants, music venues, book shops and retailers have sought financial survival using their savings, a patchwork of government support, and the welcome support of local residents.

Toronto had 3,480 fewer business establishments by the end of 2020 than it did at the beginning of the year. As of March 2021, almost 50,000 jobs have been lost in Toronto due to business closure attributed to COVID-19.

Canada’s existing business supports, specifically the commercial rent and wage subsidies, are scheduled to expire in a few weeks on October 23, 2021.

In Toronto, we know that these financial supports have been an essential lifeline for small businesses, main streets and our city. According to a survey by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, 62% of Toronto businesses reported using Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and 46% reported using Canadian Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS).

Without an extension to the emergency wage and rent subsidies, across Canada another 181,000 businesses report being at risk of closure because they can’t pay their staff or their rent. This could result in over 2.4 million people being out of work when these subsidies come to an end. In Toronto, this would have devastating impacts on the health and safety of our downtown and all main streets.

As the premier international city of Canada, when the borders closed Toronto was economically hit first and the hardest. Our financial recovery will also be the last in the country as our economy, is critically tied to international travel and out of town visitors. Since Toronto is the economic engine of the city and we enrich Ontario and Canada - if Toronto is not proportionally and financially supported to ensure a timely recovery - then the province and nation’s economic recovery will lag behind as well.

Add your voice to #SaveMainStreetsTO


How well do you know the importance of small business?

Campaign Coalition

Address: 100 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5H2N2