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  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 9:57 pm

    Hello Rodney, thank you for your questions.

    Work-sharing is a federal program designed to help eligible employers avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity (that is beyond the control of the employer)

    The program provides Employment Insurance (EI) benefits to eligible employees who agree to reduce their normal working hours and share the available work while their employer recovers.

    Work-Sharing is an agreement between employers, employees and the Government of Canada (Service Canada)

    Beyond the obvious benefit of preventing mass lay-offs, the main benefits of WS are:

    For employers:

    • retain
      qualified and experienced workers
    • avoid
      recruiting and training new employees

    For employees:

    • keep their jobs while ensuring work
      skills are retained
    • receive
      EI benefits to supplement their wages during the production slowdown

    Expected work reduction: A WS unit must reduce its hours of work by at least 10% to 60%. The reduction of hours can vary from week to week, as long as the average reduction over the course of the agreement is from 10% to 60%.

    As a special covid-19 measure, the program has been extended to a maximum possible duration of an agreement from 38 weeks to 76 weeks

    The program is effective March 15, 2020 to March 14, 2021, and it is not limited to one specific sector or industry.

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 8:21 am

    Under regular circumstances, not paying your mortgage or rent, or paying it late, would lower your credit rating.

    In Ontario, the main credit reporting agencies are TransUnion and Equifax. These agencies collect information about your debts and bill-paying history. Your landlord, financial institution or mortgage broker can report to TransUnion or Equifax any time you miss a mortgage or rent payment.

    However, Transunion or Equifax must let you explain why didn’t make your mortgage or rent payment on time and they must include the explanation in your credit file. In this situation, you should file a statement explaining how COVID-19 affected your ability to pay.

    To file a statement on your TransUnion report, call 1-800-663-9980. You can also do this by mail by following the directions and downloading the form on their website.

    To file a statement on your Equifax report, complete their online form, then print and mail it to the Montreal address listed on the form.

    Transunion or Equifax will add this explanation to your credit file only if you formally ask them to. It is your responsibility to file a statement so that you keep your credit rating safe during the COVID-19 crisis.

    All the best.

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 7:09 am

    Hi Veronica, thank you for your inquiry.

    Here is some important information about Canada Summer Job Program:

    · CSJ is a government program that gives funding to eligible employers in order to encourage them to hire youth (15-30 years of age) for summer jobs, by subsidizing their wage. The youth does not necessarily have to be a student to be eligible. The program is run once a year and the application is usually due before the end of February. For more information, visit https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/services/funding/canada-summer-jobs.html

    · The interested employer needs to fill out an Application Form, that collects information from them, such as related to their organization’s health and safety practices, work environment policies, supervision and mentoring plans, skills development plan, and other details related to both the applicant organization and the proposed job(s).

    Although the call for applications for the 2020 season is now closed, however, given the temporary flexibility for CSJ in response to the COVID-19 situation, your local MP will be able to recommend businesses they deem as an essential service in their communities for consideration to be late applicants into the CSJ Program. Even though the government has not announced if there is an application system available to date, if you would like your local MP to consider you for the future application, we encourage you to write them a letter explaining your situation as an essential service and how this program could benefit you and your community. Check out also: https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/services/funding/canada-summer-jobs/temporary-flexibility.html

    I hope this information helps,

    All the best.

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 6:38 am

    Hi Christian, Thank you for your inquiry. Here are two PPEs supplier directories:

    The Province of Ontario has added a Workplace PPE Supplier Directory to its Ontario Together website. The directory will assist workplaces to find personal protective equipment (PPE) to help protect against COVID-19. Please see link for more details.https://covid-19.ontario.ca/workplace-ppe-supplier-directory

    Also, COVID PPE HELP is a network that facilitates distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to organizations in forms of customers, suppliers, donors and logistics to help fulfill PPE needs across Canada. Check out the following link: https://covidppehelp.ca/

    I hope this helps,

    Take care.

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 6:22 am

    Hi Paula, please see the resources available as of May 15, 2020.

    The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA), the federal Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP), and the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF) provide eligible retailers with government-backed credit solutions.

    Interested retailers should Contact your primary financial institution and credit unions to apply.

    · Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA): this program provides interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits to help cover their operating costs where their revenues have been temporarily reduced. To qualify, retailers will need to demonstrate they paid between $20,000 to $1.5 million in total payroll in 2019. 25% (up to $10,000) of the loan is forgivable if the loan balance is repaid by December 31, 2022.

    o Loan Guarantee for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises: the government is working with financial institutions to issue new operating credit and cash flow term loans of up to $6.25 million to SMEs.

    o Co-Lending Program for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises: the government is working with financial institutions to co-lend term loans to SMEs for their operational cash flow requirements. Eligible businesses may obtain incremental credit amounts of up to $6.25 million through the program.

    · Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)

    o EDC Loan Guarantee for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises: the government (Export Development Canada) is working with financial institutions to guarantee 80% of new operating credit and cash flow term loans of up to $6.25M.

    o BDC Co-Lending Program for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises: the government (Business Development Canada) is working with financial institutions to co-lend (up to 80%) term loans to SMEs for their operational cash flow requirements. Eligible businesses may obtain loans of up to $6.25 million. The loans are available up to September 30, 2020.

    o BDC’s Mid-Market Financing Program. This will provide commercial loans between $12.5M to $60M to medium-sized businesses who need additional support. Qualifying retailers may need to have annual revenues over approx. $100M. To receive updates as the program develops, you can sign up on the BDC’s website. View sign-up at the following link: https://www.bdc.ca/en/pages/mid-market-form.aspx

    o EDC’s Mid-Market Guarantee and Financing Program. This is intended to bring liquidity to companies who tend to have revenues of $50 – $300M so that they can sustain operations. EDC is working with Canadian financial institutions to guarantee 75% of new operating credit and cash-flow loans, ranging from $16.75M to $80M. Those to whom these expanded guarantees are available include exporters, international investors and businesses selling their products or services within Canada. More details to be released as the program opens.

    · Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF). The LEEFF program is intended to provide bridge financing to many large for-profit businesses, including retailers, to help keep their operations going. Annual revenues to access the program generally need to be in the order of at least $300 million. To be eligible, businesses must be seeking financing of about $60 million or more, have significant operations or workforce in Canada and not be involved in insolvency proceedings. More details will be released as the program opens.

    For more information on BCAP, CEBA and LEEFF, see the federal government’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, the BDC and
    the EDC.

    I hope you find this information helpful.

    Also Paula, I’d like to let you know that Duke Heights BIA is currently providing BIA members with the opportunity to schedule a Free 1-on-1 Virtual Consultation with one of our verified partners during Covid-19, to assist with Federal Support Application programs and Financial consultation. This service is sponsored by the BIA and available Monday to Friday. Bookings are reserved for BIA Members only and will be scheduled on a first come first serve basis. If you are interested in connecting with us on this matter, please visit https://dukeheights.ca/booking/ to book your consultation.

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 20, 2020 at 10:17 pm

    Hello Jonathon, thank you for your question! It’s great news the fact that you are seeing an increase in work!

    It sounds like you have not yet implemented the work share program. If so, you should contact Service Canada to indicate the change in business and request a “delayed start” to the program. If you are already on work share, there is a “utilization report” that employers must complete and submit each week to Service Canada, indicating the number of hours worked by each employee participating in work sharing. Service Canada would be in contact with you upon receipt of these to discuss any concerns with staying in the program.

    It’s important to keep in mind that any of the he employer, employees or Service Canada have the right to terminate the agreement at any time.

    Best of luck 🙂

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 10:37 pm

    Hi Jerry,

    Thanks for reaching out. As per the government website, work-sharing agreements don’t affect eligibility to regular EI benefits if the employee gets laid off after the agreement ends.

    If the business does not recover as expected and an employee is laid off during or at the end of a Work-Sharing Agreement, the employee can apply to transfer the claim to regular benefits. The duration of the regular claim would be extended by the number of weeks the employee had participated in Work-Sharing. The benefit rate and the normal duration of the claim would not be reduced as a result of the worker having participated in Work-Sharing.

    For more information, please visit https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/corporate/notices/coronavirus/employers-factsheet.html or talk to someone from Service Canada @ Email: EDSC.DGOP.TP.REP-RES.WS.POB.ESDC@servicecanada.gc.ca

    Hope this helps.

    Laura

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Laura.
  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 10:23 pm

    The employer continues to pay, from their payroll, the wages to employees for the hours they worked, as per normal. The employer also completes the Utilization Report, so that Employment Insurance (EI) is aware of the work hours that employees missed. The employees are paid directly from EI for the percentage of their benefit rate that corresponds with the percentage of the work hours they missed.

    For example, if the employee missed 50% of their normal weekly hours due to WS, they would receive 50% of their benefit rate from EI. Their benefit rate will not be equivalent to their normal wages, as it is generally 55% of their average weekly earnings to a maximum of $573 per week (for 2020).

    https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/corporate/notices/coronavirus/employers-factsheet.html#15

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 10:12 pm

    Hello again,

    As mentioned above, Work-Sharing is an agreement between employers, employees and the Service Canada

    The Work-Sharing program is offered to workers who agree to reduce their normal working hours because of developments beyond the control of their employers.

    Eligible Employers:

    • a year-round business in Canada for at least 1 year (special measure during COVID-19 – expanded eligibility to employers who have been in business for only 1 year rather than 2)

    • a private business, publicly held company as well a non-for-profit organization (special measure during COVID-19 – expanded eligibility for staff who are essential to recovery, Government Business Enterprises (GBEs) and non-for-profit organization employers)

    • have at least 2 employees in the work-share unit, with similar job duties who agree to reduce their hours of work over a specific period of time.

    Eligible Employees:

    • a year-round, permanent, full-time or part-time employee needed to carry out the day-to-day functions of the business (your “core staff”).

    • eligible to receive EI benefits

    • agree to reduce their normal working hours by the same percentage and to share the available work.

    Special measures during COVID-19:

    • Extension
      of the maximum possible duration of an agreement from 38 weeks to 76 weeks
    • Mandatory cooling off period has been waived for
      employers who have already used the Work-Sharing program so that eligible
      employers may immediately enter into a new agreement
    • Employers are now requested to submit their applications 10 calendar days prior to the requested start date (typically, applications must be submitted at least 30 days in advance)
    • Reduce the previous requirements for a Recovery
      Plan to a single line of text in the application form; as well as eliminate
      the burden of having to provide sales/production figures

    How to apply?

    The WS program application process has been simplified due to COVID-19. Employers are no longer required to provide a detailed recovery plan or have their employees sign the WS Unit form.

    To apply for the Work-Sharing program, employers must submit:

    Send all your enquiries and application form requests to the Service Canada generic mailbox specific for Work-Sharing Program:

    Email: EDSC.DGOP.TP.REP-RES.WS.POB.ESDC@servicecanada.gc.ca

    Toll-free: 1-800-367-5693; TTY: 1-855-881-9874

    Reference: https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/corporate/notices/coronavirus.html

    I hope this helps, Rodney.

    All the best.

  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 7:27 am

    Hi Jerry,

    Great to hear you have already applied to such a great funding program. I hope you will find out soon if your application has been approved. In the context of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic not all funding decisions have been finalized.

    Although they will contact you via email (the one you provided in your application), you can also check regularly the list of employers approved for funding available on the Canada Summer Jobs 2020: Employers that have been approved for funding web page.

    Given the temporary flexibility for CSJ in response to the COVID-19 situation, these are the changes in the program terms:

    Private and public sector employers can now receive up to 100% of the provincial minimum hourly wage for each employee they hired for the funded jobs (jobs included in the CSJ applications and approved (instead of the previous 50%)

    Employers will be allowed to hire staff on a part-time basis (fewer than 30 hrs/week) (previously, all CSJ-funded employment had to be full time – a minimum of 30 hours per week for at least 6 weeks).

    Agreed upon contract can be initiated beginning May 11, 2020 (or as soon as you receive the approval of your CSJ application) and extended to February 28, 2021 (previously, all CSJ-funded positions had to be completed no later than August 28, 2020)

    All funded employers will be provided the flexibility to amend project and job activities to support the delivery of critical services.

    Potential adjustments to existing project and job activities could include:

    • community
      programming: a shift away from in-person activities to the use of
      digital tools for the delivery of programming
    • service
      industry: a shift away from in-person service to take-out and
      delivery
    • administrative
      positions: a shift to the use of available remote and telework
      options
    • support
      for vulnerable populations: a shift to activities to support
      populations facing new vulnerabilities under COVID-19, such as seniors or
      persons with disabilities, including the delivery of necessities or
      assistance with adaptive technology
    • retail
      services: a shift away from in-person and in-store roles to remote
      and delivery roles

    References: https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/services/funding/canada-summer-jobs/temporary-flexibility.html

    Good luck.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Laura.
  • Laura

    Moderator
    May 19, 2020 at 6:54 am

    Hi Jonathon,

    To apply to be added to the Ontario Workplace PPE Supplier Directory, submit your organization’s details at the following link: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/apply-be-added-workplace-ppe-supplier-directory

    To apply to be added to the COVID PPE HELP network, fill out the supplier registration form here: https://covidppehelp.ca/Account/Registration/Supplier

    Good luck

Viewing 1 - 11 of 11 posts