Small Business Unable To Access Support

Seventy per cent of businesses say federal and provincial small business relief programs are crucial for their survival in 2021, but many are still unable to access support, says the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). “Small business owners are anxious to replace subsidies with sales, but with business lockdowns and restrictions still in place across Canada, programs need to be extended and expanded in order to avoid widespread business failures,” says Dan Kelly, CFIB president. “Already, one in six business owners is considering permanent closure and that’s on top of the ones who have already gone out of business. As helpful as the programs have been for many, CFIB’s offices continue to be flooded with calls from small business owners who are struggling to access many of the critical supports. One of the biggest gaps includes the lack of access to federal programs for new businesses that opened in 2020. This needs to change.” CFIB research shows two-thirds of small businesses (65 per cent) have used the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) and 59 per cent have used the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS). In comparison, only a quarter have used the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) and eight per cent have used a provincial support program.