LATEST UPDATE September 25, 2020
The Yukon Chamber of Commerce is focussed on the health and safety of our member organizations and their employees. Accordingly, we are monitoring the ongoing conditions and business-impacting information associated with the COVID-19 virus.
At the time of posting this statement (September 25, 2020), the Public Health Agency of Canada states that COVID-19 is a serious health threat, and the situation is evolving daily. The risk will vary between and within communities, but given the increasing number of cases in Canada, the risk to Canadians is considered high. For the latest information from Yukon Government Health and Wellness, as well as updates from the Chief Medical Officer, click here.
September 24, 2020 - Great news!: The Yukon Business Relief Program has been extended until March 31, 2021. Click here for further details! (New!)
September 24, 2020 - The Yukon Chamber wanted to share a letter we received from the Yukon Government related to Yukon Standard Time. Going forward, the Yukon will officially be seven hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC -7) all year long. Yukoners will not change their clocks anymore.
Practically speaking this means, come November 1, 2020 when time zones outside Yukon shift to standard time, Yukon will be on the same time as Alberta and one hour ahead of the majority of BC, including Vancouver. Also, in March 2021 when other time zones go to daylight saving time, we will be on the same time as BC and one hour behind Alberta. (New!)
September 23, 2020 - Important Deadline for Employers! YCC offers a reminder that it is time to review the payroll estimates you provided to Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board (YWCHSB) earlier this year on your 2019/2020 Employer’s Payroll Return (EPR). All employers should have already received a letter or an email on this from YWCHSB.
Also, to negotiate payment terms on any additional premium calculated based on the revision, the revision must be reported to YWCHSB by end of day on 30 September 2020.
When calculating the payroll estimate, include earnings for employees, casual labourers, and subcontractors who do not carry their own workers’ compensation coverage. Do not include earnings for sole proprietors or dividend amounts. The 2020 maximum assessable earnings amount is $90,750 per worker. If your 2020 payroll will not exceed 125% of the estimate you provided on your EPR, no action is necessary. (New!)
September 11, 2020 - the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program has been updated, and on September 10, the Yukon Chamber presented a CRA information and Q&A session to address those changes. We were also provided with notes on the CEWS changes. Applications for the claim period 5 (July 5 to August 1) for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program are open, and CRA has an updated online calculator. Changes to the CEWS program were announced on July 17th. Click here to review what the changes are. CRA has also released a one-pager, including a CRA-developed infographic that outlines key program changes. (New!)
August 12, 2020 - The Yukon Government has updated their online portal for new applicants for Phase 2 of the COVID-19 Rent Assist Program. Tenants will need an up to date tenancy agreement in their name to apply, and they will upload it at the end of their application. People can also email the Rent Assist team at firstname.lastname@example.org if they have additional questions on eligibility, etc.
June 18, 2020 - PPE is available through the following sources (please contact us if your are a Yukon business not listed below, and offer PPE:
o GP Distributing: 867-667-4500,
o Yukon Brewing: 867-668-4183
o Canadian Tire: 867-668-3652,
o Yukon Service Supply: 867-668-4242
o Yukon Still Works: 867-393-2111
Yukon Government Announcements:
May 22, 2020 - The Government of Yukon has released a new COVID-19 update that includes information related to new Orders to the Civil Emergency Measures Act addressing Child care services, Restaurants and Personal services.
May 22, 2020 - The Government of Yukon has announced a Yukon Essential Workers Income Support Program, which will provide low-income essential workers with a wage subsidy of up to $4.00 per hour to a maximum of $20.00 per hour for up to 16 weeks.
May 22, 2020 - The Government of Yukon has announced that it is providing $750,000 to help Yukon employers create new summer employment for graduating and postsecondary students in critical and essential services.
May 21, 2020 - YWCHSB has updated their website with four COVID-19 related documents. They include:
COVID-19 worker and employer resources [UPDATED]
Return to the workplace [UPDATED]
Workers’ claims and COVID-19 [UPDATED]
May 20, 2020 - The Yukon Business Relief Program is being extended to provide continued support to Yukon businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Yukon Business Relief Program helps Yukon businesses that have experienced a 30 per cent reduction in revenue and need immediate support to cover fixed costs, including rent, utilities and business insurance. Eligible businesses can apply for a grant of up to $30,000 per month to cover fixed costs. The program has been extended to July 23, 2020.
May 19, 2020 – With the Premier’s May 15 announcement of the Yukon Restart Plan, employers may have questions about what this means for your business. YWCHSB is available as a resource to help restart your business safely.
Yukon’s Restart Plan will require all employers to develop a COVID-19 Operational Plan (see the May 15 announcement and links, below).
YWCHSB is available to review your Operational Plan. If you wish to have them do so, send it to email@example.com.
YWCHSB also has a suite of appropriate information resources on their website wcb.yk.ca/covid-19 for review, including:
• new resources to support returning workers to the workplace
• reliefs available to businesses through adjustments to payroll estimates
Finally, a reminder that their safety officers are available for consultation upon request. Call 1-867-667-5450 or toll free at 1-800-661-0443 for more information.
May 15, 2020 - The Government of Yukon and the Chief Medical Officer of Health have released A Path Forward: Yukon’s plan for lifting COVID-19 restrictions.The "A Path Forward" 52 page document presents a gradual and phased approach to lifting COVID-19 restrictions, with a focus on protecting communities and vulnerable residents, and on preventing the re-introduction and spread of COVID-19 in Yukon. The Plan lays out the principles that will guide decisions on easing restrictions. They are based on public health advice and best practices across Canada adapted to fit Yukon’s local context. Phase I: Restart of A Path Forward begins today, following the easing of certain restrictions already announced during the previous “response phase” of the plan. As well, businesses will need to complete and submit a COVID-19 operational plan to open up. Click here for the COVID-19 operational plan template for businesses and services. (Click here for the COVID-19 Operational Plan Template for Businesses and Services PDF-format document.)
May 15, 2020 - The Government of Yukon and the Chief Medical Officer of Health have released A Path Forward: Yukon’s plan for lifting COVID-19 restrictions.The "A Path Forward" 52 page document presents a gradual and phased approach to lifting COVID-19 restrictions, with a focus on protecting communities and vulnerable residents, and on preventing the re-introduction and spread of COVID-19 in Yukon. The Plan lays out the principles that will guide decisions on easing restrictions. They are based on public health advice and best practices across Canada adapted to fit Yukon’s local context. Phase I: Restart of A Path Forward begins today, following the easing of certain restrictions already announced during the previous “response phase” of the plan. As well, businesses will need to complete and submit a COVID-19 operational plan to open up. Click here for the COVID-19 operational plan template for businesses and services. (Click here for the COVID-19 Operational Plan Template for Businesses and Services PDF-format document.) (New!)
May 12, 2020 - Premier Silver has announced that all organizations that are opening up must complete COVID-19 Operational Plans to identify and manage risks with regard to COVID-19. Templates will be available shortly. Meanwhile, organizations wanting advice or assistance with the development of their plans can write to firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll free: 1-877-374-0425. The government is developing guidelines for various industry sectors, and when available, they will be published at: yukon.ca. Some guidelines are already on the website. Current information and resources can be found here: https://yukon.ca/covid-19Other resources can be found here: https://wcb.yk.ca/newsandupdates/COVID-19/Q0320.aspxand here: https://wcb.yk.ca/COVID-19.aspx
April 16, 2020 - Application information for the Yukon Business Relief Program, which provides help to Yukon businesses with funding to help cover certain fixed costs (e.g., rent/lease payments, utilities and business insurance), is now available. There is also a MS Word version. This funding is available to cover fixed costs up for two months to a maximum of $30,000 per month. The program will cover eligible costs incurred from March 23, 2020 to May 22, 2020. Applications will be accepted until June 30, 2020.
April 16, 2020 - Yukon College'sInnovation & Entrepreneurship (I&E) grouplaunches a new program, PIVOT. This is anew program to help local companies minimize the effects of COVID-19. The program is designed to support Yukon businesses of all sizes and stages during the global pandemic and beyond.
April 9, 2020 - Yukon Government has announced the Yukon Business Relief Program, which will help Yukon businesses that have experienced a 30 per cent reduction in revenue and require immediate relief. Yukon businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic will receive funding from the Government of Yukon to cover fixed business costs, including rent, utilities and business insurance.
Eligible businesses can apply for a grant of up to $30,000 per month to cover fixed costs from March 23 to May 22, 2020.
April 2, 2020 - The Yukon Government announced details of supports available to address the economic impacts of event cancellations related to COVID-19. The temporary Support for Events Funding Programwill help businesses recover certain costs from the cancellation of major events due to COVID-19. All eligible Yukon businesses and NGOs may apply.
April 2, 2020 - The Yukon Government announces new Emergency measures and guidance to protect Yukoners from the spread of COVID-19.
Paid Sick Leave Rebate - Information Sheet and Application:
The Paid Sick Leave Rebate supports Yukon workers and self-employed people affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The rebate allows Yukon workers without paid sick leave to stay at home if they: become sick; and are required to self-isolate while still meeting their basic financial needs.
Yukon government announces $1 million increase to the Tourism Cooperative Marketing Fund. Information can be found at: https://yukon.ca/en/tourism-cooperative-marketing-fund
Canadian Government Announcements:
August 20, 2020 - To support Canadian businesses and workers through the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government is freezing the EI premium rate for employees at the 2020 level of $1.58 per $100 of insurable earnings for two years. The rate for employers, who pay 1.4 times the employee rate, will also remain unchanged at $2.21 per $100 of insurable earnings.
August 6, 2020 - Government of Canada's COVID Alert App Is now available. The contract tracing app is available for iOS and Android devices and will alert users if they come into contact with anyone who tests positive for COVID-19. Note: This application is being rolled out province by province, starting in Ontario, which is the first province where people can use COVID Alert to report a COVID-19 diagnosis. The Government of Canada comments that even outside Ontario, it's still helpful to download COVID Alert. That way, when people in your area are able to report a diagnosis, you'll be notified if you were near them.
July 16, 2020 - Federal Government To Provide $19 Billion To Provinces And Territories. This afternoon it was announced that the federal, provincial and territorial governments have reached an agreement in which the federal government will provide over $19 billion in funding to help the country’s economic recovery. The funding will target seven key areas:
Testing, contact tracing and data management
Health care, including mental health and addictions
Aiding vulnerable populations, including in nursing homes
Personal protective equipment
Early learning and child care
Municipal budgets, including public transit
Paid sick leave
June 24, 2020 - The Government of Canada has temporarily extended time periods given to employers to recall employees laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Changes have been announced to extend periods for temporary layoffs of federally-regulated private-sector employees to allow employers more time to recall laid-off employees. The temporary changes will help protect the jobs of federally-regulated private-sector employees and will support employers facing economic hardship as a result of the pandemic. The amendments temporarily extend these time periods by up to six months.
May 19, 2020 - The Canadian Government has announced an expansion to the eligibility criteria for the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) to include many owner-operated small businesses.
May 15, 2020 - The Government of Canada's emergency wage-subsidy program will be extended to August 29 to help employers keep their workers on the payroll during the pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced today. The program — which covers 75 per cent of an eligible company's payroll, up to a maximum of $847 per week per employee — was originally set to expire next month.
April 20, 2020 - CanNor launches the new Northern Business Relief Fund (NBRF), providing short term support for ongoing fixed costs for small and medium sized businesses located in the territories that have been impacted by economic disruptions due to COVID-19. The NBRF will provide qualifying SMEs with support for up to 100% of eligible fixed costs, up to a maximum of $100,000 over a 4 month period, retroactive to April 1, 2020. Eligible recipients include all licensed, northern-based SMEs including sole-proprietors, partnerships and incorporated companies, provided the business is eligible, and is currently operating at a loss as a direct result of COVID-19.
April 20, 2020 - The Government of Canada announces support for Indigenous businesses of up to $306.8 million in funding to help small and medium-sized Indigenous businesses, and to support Aboriginal Financial Institutions that offer financing to these businesses. These measures should help Yukon Indigenous-owned businesses get through these difficult times.
April 17, 2020 - The Government of Canada announced $250 million in funding for the Innovation Assistance Program (IAP) to assist Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). IRAP IAP provides a wage subsidy to eligible employers for up to 12 weeks. SMEs pursuing technology-driven innovation who have been unable to secure funding under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) are eligible and can apply for financial assistance under IRAP IAP.
April 16, 2020 - The Federal Government announced this morning that their previously announced loan program, which offers businesses up to $40,000 in a government-backed loan, will now be available to businesses with payrolls worth between $20,000 and $1.5 million. Previously, the interest-free loan was for those with payrolls worth between $50,000 and one million. Up to $10,000 of the loan is non-repayable.
April 9, 2020 - The Government of Canada has announced further changes to the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. Previously announced qualifying criterion was a 30% or greater decrease in business revenues in Mar. 2020 vs. Mar. 2019. Revisions will allow business to qualify on the basis of:
· A 15% decrease in revenues in Mar. 2020 as compared to Mar. 2019, or
· A 15% decrease in revenues in Mar. 2020 as compared to the average of Jan. and Feb. 2020.
In addition, not-for-profit organizations can choose to include or exclude government funding from their calculations. Further work is also underway on the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and the Canada Summer Jobs Program.
April 7, 2020 - Links for Yukon companies interested in assisting COVID response.
· Request to suppliers about their ability to provide products and services. Website also includes the specifications for the various types of personal protective equipment, medical supplies and services being sought.
April 6, 2020 - The Canadian Government Application site for the for Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is now open!
All Business and Non Profit organizations will be eligible for 75% of support for payroll:
Subsidy is based on a decrease in revenues of at least 30%. The federal government will cover up to 75% of a salary on the first $58,700, which could mean payments of up to $847 a week for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020. Note: As of 9:00 am PST April 1, the Federal Government has not announced full details or published a link to online applications for the wage subsidy program.
RESOURCES AND TOOLS FOR YUKON BUSINESSES:
Yukon First Nations COVID-19 Coordination Group as shared with the Yukon Chamber of Commerce a link to the www.cyfn.ca/covid-19website which is hosting the most recent travel advisories issued by participating First Nations and municipalities across the Yukon. CYFN will update their map as participating First Nations governments change their information.
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is providing the "Make The Most Of The CBRN Reopening Toolkit For Business." As the Yukon continue to make progress on resuming some economic activities, you can make use of the comprehensive CBRN reopening toolkit. The toolkit provides information on regulations and reopening, childcare access, communications materials, sourcing PPE, access to guides and materials from other organizations and more.
Do You Need To Let Your Customers Know You Are #Open4Business? The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has developed a variety of materials to ensure businesses across Canada have what they need to let their customers know they are reopening. Ready to reopen? Download these images and post them on your windows, doors or website.
Introducing The Business Resilience Service Hotline. The Business Resilience Service (BRS) allows small - to medium-sized businesses, not-for-profits and charities to connect with experienced business advisors from across Canada for guidance on which government relief programs will be most appropriate to support them and their recovery. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce and the Government of Canada team up with the accounting profession to provide free advice to small to medium-sized business, not-for-profits and charities to navigate uncertainty. The program is run through the Canadian Chamber’s Canadian Business Resilience Network in collaboration with support from Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) and Imagine Canada. The program, coordinated by EY, will be provided for four weeks from Monday, May 25, and involves support from approximately 125 business advisors from across the accounting profession. The program, delivered free of charge, provides:
- Guidance on COVID-19 financial support program options and eligibility
- Direction on accessing the most appropriate support organizations
- Help to make decisions to support recovery plans
- Real time insights and feedback to policymakers
Here is a news release covering this.
COVID-19 and the Workplace: Remote Working Legal Considerations and Recommendations - It is important for employers to understand the legal strategies available to manage the risks associated with remote working by their employees. Fiona Brown, Lorenzo Lisi and Daria Peregoudova, lawyers at Aird & Berlis LLP, have written an article on this. (NEW!)
Reopening Your Business in a Post-COVID-19 World - As restrictions are beginning to be removed, businesses are starting reopen. The only question is how can workers and the public be protected when that happens. David Reiter, a partner at Aird & Berlis LLP, has written an article on this. (NEW!)
Here's a great summary of Financial Support programs of the Federal Government, create by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce as part of their Canadian Business Resiliancy Network initiative.
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has established the Canadian Business Resilience Network as a resource to help Canadian businesses navigate the COVID-19 reality and prepare for recovery.
BDC article: COVID-19: 7 steps to sustain your business through the disruption.
Yukon College's Innovation & Entrepreneurship (I&E) group launches a new program, PIVOT. This is a new program to help local companies minimize the effects of COVID-19. The program is designed to support Yukon businesses of all sizes and stages during the global pandemic and beyond.
Latest COVID-19 information (Yukon government) (self-assessment tool for COVID-19)
Signage for Businesses (Yukon Chamber Of Commerce scroll to bottom of page)
BDC has just announced that all legal businesses will be eligible for the Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP), for the duration of the program. This includes both the Canada Emergency Business Account and SME Loan and Guarantee program. For example, businesses in the cannabis sector and those in the hospitality sector operating bars and lounges will now be eligible.
The Northern Safety Network Yukon (NSNY) has been compiling resources relevant to COVID-19. Their page covers general information along with resources for businesses.
Key Yukon Government Departmental Phone Numbers: Business: (867) 456-3803, toll free in Yukon: 1-800-661-0408, extension 3803 Immigration: (867) 667-5131, toll free in Yukon: 1-800-661-0408, extension 5131
“The Canadian Society of Safety Engineering is presenting a free webinar series entitled: Tactics for maintaining Mental Fitness during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Click here to learn more and to get access to the recording of the first session in the series.”
Tourism Cooperative Marketing Fund - 100% Fund Covered
Resources for Canadian businesses
Resources for Canadian businesses (Government of Canada)
Dept. of Finance Canada: Support for Canadians and Businesses
Prepare your workplace
Getting workplace ready for Covid-19 (World Health Organization)
Crisis Communications Plan (Canadian Chamber of Commerce)
Business Continuity & Recovery Plan (Canadian Chamber of Commerce)
Mass Gathering recommendations
Mass gathering guidelines (Government of Canada)
Business Pandemic Influenza Planning Checklist (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - USA)
Pandemic preparedness for business (Canadian Chamber of Commerce)
As recommended by the
Yukon's Chief Medical Officer of Health
Yukon Chamber of Commerce staff are working remotely and can be reached at their usual e-mail addresses:
Peter Turner: email@example.com
Mal Malloch: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sandrine Jallet: email@example.com
Nikolay Potapenko: firstname.lastname@example.org