This is a challenging time for many businesses across the country. The provincial and federal governments have announced a number of relief packages but the information is changing rapidly as the situation develops. The most important thing is that you, your employees, your families, and your neighbours stay safe. The best way to do this is to be aware of, and abide by, the health orders that are issued by the provinces and the federal government. The following is a list of Resources:

Health-Related Information:

Here is health information related to COVID-19 from the BC Centre for Disease Control.

Here is what you need to do to stay safe.

There is currently a Provincial State of Emergency. Here is a list of the special orders from the Provincial Health Officer.

The home of the Federal Government’s COVID-19 information is located here.

We have lots of restaurants and food stores in Esquimalt. Here is information you need to know if you operate one of these.

And information specific to staying safe is located here.

Business Relief Information

Federal Information about business relief packages can be found at this link. This information changes regularly, so keep going back for updates!

And in particular, the 10% Payroll subsidy can be claimed right away. Here is the information you need that describes exactly how to do this.

The federal government is going to provide a 75% wage subsidy for eligible businesses. Their site says: “…up to 75% wage subsidy for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020. This will help businesses to keep and return workers to the payroll. More details on eligibility criteria are shared at this LINK

The Federal government is also creating the new Canada Emergency Business Account to make $40,000 interest-free loans available with a 25% forgiveness for eligible businesses with 2019 payrolls between $50k and $1M. – LINK

The province has implemented a number of relief packages also that include deferred taxes and direct financial support for employees who have reduced hours. Here are the main information pages:

Tax information that you need to know right now – LINK

Worksafe BC information you should know related to COVID-19 – LINK

Employees are entitled to take unpaid, job-protected leave related to COVID-19. Details at this LINK

BDC is offering new assistance to small businesses – LINK

The BC Economic Development Association has a list of resources – LINK

The Province is maintaining a good list of supports at this LINK.

Can your business help out by providing supplies? Here is a link to learn more about providing supplies.

Chamber Insurance

If you have Chamber Insurance you might need to know how layoffs and reduced hours affect your employees’ benefits. Chamber Insurance has been very accommodating, but for up-to-date information related to your particular circumstances you should connect with them. 
Email: or call Jack Insurance and Financial at 250-383-9866 or contact your advisor directly. Or click here to access Jack Insurance’s website.

The Chamber Plan also has HR, Accounting and Legal assistance available for business owners. There are some resources specific to COVID-19 situations that can be found at this link. Talk to your adviser for more information about services that are available to you.

Esquimalt Municipal Government

The Esquimalt Township is here to help – their list of resources can be found at this link. They do have regular meetings with other provincial municipalities and the provincial government. Share your concerns with us (the Chamber of Commerce) and the Township and let us know how you’re doing! Information can be passed on to those that need to hear it. We can all work together to support each other at the local level.