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The COVID-19 pandemic has affected businesses of every size. This page includes information on supports, services and relief programs that can assist business owners as the situation evolves.

Supports for all business owners

The Halton Small Business Centre is continuing to support Halton small businesses and working with our local community partners during COVID-19. Contact us for more information about our virtual services and programs. We’re here to help!

For more information, visit our Halton Business Blog (external link), follow Halton Business on Twitter (external link), follow Halton Business on Facebook (external link) or email For more information about supports, programs and opportunities specific to your community, please visit your local municipality’s website.

Current situation

Supports for specific industries

  • Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) (external link): Provides $500 a week for up to 26 weeks. Employed and self-employed individuals can only apply for the CRB benefit if they are not eligible for Employment Insurance benefits. Recovery benefits are retroactive to September 27, 2020 and available until September 25, 2021.
  • Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) (external link): Subsidy of 75 per cent of employee wages until November 21, 2020. A top up of 25 per cent has been added to employers most in need. Also a proposal has been made to extend CEWS until June 2021 (includes a wage calculator).
  • Work-Sharing Program – COVID-19 (external link): Work-Sharing is a temporary measure up to 76 weeks. All businesses across Canada that are directly or indirectly impacted by the downturn in business due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic can apply for the program.
  • Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) (external link): This $55 billion program provides interest-free loans of up to $60,000 to eligible small businesses and not-for-profits. Repaying the balance of the loan on or before December 31, 2022 will result in loan forgiveness of 33 percent (up to $20,000). Application deadline is March 31, 2021.
  • Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) (external link) (external link): CECRA will provide forgivable loans to eligible commercial property owners experiencing potential rent shortfalls because their small business tenants have been heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. If the landlord reduces the impacted small business tenant’s rent by 75 per cent, the tenant would pay 25 per cent of their rent and the governments of Ontario and Canada would share the remaining 50 per cent through a forgivable loan. Periods covered until end of September 2020.
  • Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (external link): CERS will replace CECRA. It allows you to bypass landlords for direct relief and to provide simple and easy-to-access rent and mortgage support until June 2021 for qualifying businesses affected by COVID-19.
  • Help with COVID-19 costs  (external link): Find out if your business is eligible for grants to help with the cost of personal protective equipment, property taxes, energy bills and extra support if you have to close or significantly restrict services because of provincial public health measures.
    • Ontario Small Business Support Grant: starting at $10,000 for all eligible businesses, the grant provides businesses with funding to a maximum of $20,000 to help cover decreased revenue expected as a result of the Provincewide Shutdown.
    • Ontario's Main Street Relief Grant - PPE: Eligible small businesses will get one-time grants of up to $1,000 to help with the costs of PPE.
    • Property tax and energy cost rebates: Businesses that are, or were, required to shut down or significantly restrict services due to provincial public health measures can apply for rebates, provided in the form of grants, to help with their fixed costs.

Programs for students/youth