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The Coalition of Hardest Hit Businesses

The Coalition of Hardest Hit Businesses (CHHB) is an industry-driven group of over 40 stakeholders representing a variety of sectors including tourism, arts and culture, events and festivals, and hospitality.

CHHB formed to call on the Canadian government to provide additional supports for employees in the tourism, arts, culture, events, and hospitality industries.

The majority of people working in these sectors are Canadians running small or medium-sized businesses in their communities. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, these industries were strong, growing, and employed more than 2 million Canadians – or about every 1 in 11 jobs. However restrictions on mass gatherings, border closures, and capacity reductions required to protect public health have impacted our industries more than others and leave our otherwise sustainable businesses in peril.

In an effort to gather additional supports for these sectors, the Coalition of Hardest Hit Businesses is calling on the industry to participate in a letter writing campaign. To participate in this campaign, please click on the button below.

Canadian Government Prioritizes Tourism in Throne Speech

On September 23, the Governor General presented a Throne Speech on behalf of the government, which outlines the government’s priorities and legislative agenda. The focus of this speech was economic recovery in the face of COVID-19, and measures that will help Canadians and the economy return to prosperity. The Throne Speech will lead to a vote of confidence in the House of Commons in the coming days, and could be key in deciding if Canada will hold a federal election in the fall.

Travel and tourism was among the only industries directly mentioned in the speech as a sector in need of further support. Support measures such as the extension of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program through the summer of 2021, investment in liquidity measures including enhancements to the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) and Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP), and further support for industries that have been the hardest hit, including travel and tourism, hospitality, and cultural industries like the performing arts. These measures have the potential to provide much needed relief to many of you in the coming months as we wait for a return to conditions that will support a flourishing industry. 

Read more about the throne speech

Greater Golden Horseshoe Transportation Plan

The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is developing a transportation plan to connect people to places across the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH) region and enhance the economic competitiveness of the region. The GGH transportation plan will ensure the future transportation system supports continued prosperity and quality, while meeting the environmental, economic and social needs of families, businesses and communities until 2051.
To aid in the development of the GGH Transportation plan, MTO is currently conducting an online survey to gather information regarding transportation priorities, travel patterns, and new and existing transportation challenges.

The tourism industry is unique in that it is spread across the landscape and is made up of many segments of the economy. It is important that there are safe and efficient ways to move visitors around the area in order to maintain a high-quality visitor experience, whether it is through auto/RV/motorcycle travel, bus touring, air, rail, cycling or cruise ship. Ensuring the needs of tourism industries are represented in the development of the GGH transportation plan will help make it easier for visitors to move throughout the region and enjoy some of the best of what our province has to offer.

The survey is open to any person or organization with an interest in transportation within the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH) area in Southern Ontario, especially those who travel within it. Tourism operators and clients who travel within or through the GGH are welcome to participate.
The survey will be available
here until October 26, 2020.

NOHFC Funding

On September 29, Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines and Minister of Indigenous Affairs announced the creation of a new short-term Northern Ontario Recovery Program (NORP) to help businesses adapt to new COVID-19 public health guidelines and protect employees and customers. Companies can apply to NORP for assistance with projects that help them adjust to the impacts of COVID-19, such as, but not limited to:

  • Building renovations and new constructions
  • Customer and employee safety installations
  • Equipment purchases, including personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Marketing for new business initiatives
  • Restructuring of business operations
Additionally, businesses can receive funding to cover costs already incurred if those costs fit the scope of the funding. 

Applications will be open from October 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020, with the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) administering the new program.
Marketing Tips and Tricks from Destination Canada
Part of a 6 part series from Destination Canada’s masters, each Tips & Tricks episodes will give you expert insight into some of DC’s most frequently asked questions. Find tips on how to make better informed marketing decisions using your website data with Destination Canada’s Jacob Pope. This short guide will cover how to track your website performance, why it is important, and how to turn your data into actionable goals.


ITO in Horizon Travel Magazine
ITO members are featured in the September issue of Horizon Travel and Lifestyle Magazine, a popular travel and lifestyle magazine that highlights travel destinations and resources across Canada. At ITO, we continue to support our members by sharing their products and creating exposure and awareness about Indigenous tourism experiences in Ontario.

More marketing campaigns are in the works to promote our members listed on the Indigenous Experience Ontario website.

Not listed on IndigenousExperienceOntario.ca yet? Email us at membership@indigenoustourismontario.ca to find out if you are eligible.

      Indigenous Tourism Ontario
      1300 Hwy 540
      4 directions Complex Unit 4
      Aundeck Omni Kaning, Ontario

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