COVID-19 Business Reopening - Information and Tools

The Prescott and Russell Entrepreneurship Centre is committed to supporting businesses in the economic recovery. Ontario is working on economic recovery, which includes reopening businesses. We encourage you to check out the latest information on reopening businesses.

The purpose of this document is to guide businesses in reopening by following health and safety measures. Please continue to follow the guidelines of the Province of Ontario and the Eastern Ontario Health Unit.

Reopening Ontario: what’s in each stageLearn about what can reopen in each stage and where, according to the government’s regional approach to stage 2.

Find PPE suppliersReview a list of companies that sell personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies to keep your employees and customers safe from COVID-19. Before your business reopens, review sector-specific guidelines to identify personal protective equipment (PPE) and supplies to keep your employees and customers safe. Supplies are in high demand and the needs of frontline health care workers and first responders will continue to be prioritized.



Find sector-specific guidelines and posters to help protect workers, customers and the general public from coronavirus (COVID-19) in Ontario. In addition, Workplace Safety & Prevention Services offers recommendations for different types of industries.

Information Posters

The Canadian Business Resilience Network - CBRN is sharing posters for you to use such as,

For any other sector or information, visit here.


Additional resources

To find out about the programs and assistance available, please consult our page COVID-19 - Resources and Programs 
New information is added regularly.


This study was conducted by the Prescott and Russell Economic Development and Tourism in collaboration with the economic development departments of the municipalities of Clarence-Rockland, Alfred and Plantagenet, Champlain, Hawkesbury, East Hawkesbury, The Nation, Casselmanand Russell.
The study targeted entrepreneurs in the Prescott and Russell region and aimed to assess the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the local business climate, determine the support required by regional employers, identify the main sources of information consulted by businesses as well as offer immediate support to the most affected businesses.
The questionnaire was distributed by email and made randomly available to entrepreneurs of Prescott and Russell during eight days, from May 1st to May 8th, 2020. 479 entrepreneurs in the region responded to the survey. Given the number of businesses surveyed, the confidence level for this survey is 95% and the margin of error is 4%. Response rate is 39%. When indicated, these calculations exclude the municipalities of Russell and Champlain which have developed their own survey. Data analysis was conducted in-house.

Agriculture Support

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada - Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) - Information for industry

Measure for international agricultural employees:

Keeping Canadians and workers in the food supply chain safe



COVID-19 support program - Payment deferrals and credit line program

Who is eligible? Producers, agribusinesses and food processors.

How to access? Contact the Farm Credit Canada office in Casselman at 613-764-1515.

Farm Credit Canada offers the following measures:

  • a deferral of principal and interest payments up to six months for existing loans; or
  • a deferral of principal payments up to 12 months.

For more information.


Agri-Food Open for E-Business - Targeted Intake

The Governments of Canada and Ontario are supporting the agriculture, agri-food and agri-products sectors to capture online e-business opportunities that will help create new, expanded or enhanced markets and open new retail channels to help generate new revenue streams for future growth.

The Agri-Food Open for E-Business initiative will help food producers, farmers markets, retailers, garden centres, greenhouses, nurseries, and agricultural associations develop online business, providing consumers with greater access to a wide variety of food and agriculture products.

This targeted application intake features two funding streams:

  1. Bring Your Business Online: Provides a grant of up to $5,000 to eligible organizations/businesses to help establish an online presence.
  2. Develop Online Business Opportunities: Provides cost-share funding for up to 90 per cent of eligible costs to a maximum of $75,000 to develop e-business opportunities on a larger scale.

For more information.

Other programs
Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program – Producers
Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program - Provincially Licensed Meat Processors


Additional support

Canadian Survey on Business Conditions (CSBC)

Collecting business data is now more important than ever as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt economies around the world.

The purpose of the Canadian Survey on Business Conditions is to measure the impact of COVID-19 on businesses in Canada. Information collected is intended to help governments, chambers of commerce and business associations across Canada devise strategies and mechanisms to foster the survival and continuity of businesses in Canada. These data will be critical for making informed decisions in the weeks and months ahead.

If you are a business owner, you have until April 17 to make your voice heard. Don’t miss this opportunity: click here.

Canada Emergency Response Benefit


What is the Canada Emergency Response Benefit?

The CERB supports Canadians by providing urgently needed financial support to employed and self-employed Canadians who have been directly affected by COVID-19. It provides a payment of $2,000 for a 4-week period (equivalent to $500 a week) for up to 16 weeks.

How to apply?

Applications for the CERB will begin the week of Monday, April 6, 2020.

Prior to April 6, individuals who are without work and are eligible for EI can continue to apply for Employment Insurance. If you are not eligible for Employment Insurance, find out how you can get ready to apply for the CERB through the Canada Revenue Agency.

Who can apply?

The CERB will be available to workers:

  • residing in Canada, who are at least 15 years old;
  • who have stopped working because of COVID-19 or are eligible for Employment Insurance regular or sickness benefits;
  • who had income of at least $5,000 in 2019 or in the 12 months prior to the date of their application; and
  • who are or expect to be without employment or self-employment income for at least 14 consecutive days in the initial four-week period.

The Benefit is only available to individuals who stopped work and are not earning employment or self-employment income as a result of reasons related to COVID-19. If you have not stopped working because of COVID-19, you are not eligible for the Benefit.

Get ready now!

1 - There are two ways to apply:

  • Online with CRA My Account

Do you have a CRA My Account? Open one now here.

  • Over the phone with an automated phone service at 1-800-959-2019.

Is your direct deposit and mailing information up to date with the CRA? You will need your social insurance number (SIN).

2 - Determine the best day of the week to apply once the system is available

Whether you apply online or by phone, we want to provide the best service possible to everyone. To help manage this, we have set up specific days for you to apply. Please use the following guidelines:

Here are the days to apply based on your birth month:

  • January, February or March: Mondays
  • Your best day to apply: April 6
  • April, May or June: Tuesdays
  • Your best day to apply: April 7
  • July, August or September: Wednesdays
  • Your best day to apply: April 8
  • October, November or December: Thursdays
  • Your best day to apply: April 9
  • Any month: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

What are the payment methods?

The CERB is paid by direct deposit or by cheque if your direct deposit information is not on file.

When to expect payment?

  • If you are getting your payment by direct deposit, expect your payment within 3 business days from the day you submitted your application
  • If you are getting your payment by cheque, expect to get the cheque within 10 business days from the day you submitted your application.

Apply again every 4 weeks

You will need to apply and confirm your eligibility for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit every 4 weeks (to a maximum of 16 weeks) if your situation continues. Each payment of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) covers a 4-week period, beginning March 15, 2020.

For more information on the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, click here.

Ontario Starts Planning for Economic Recovery

Premier Ford is forming a team to develop a growth plan for Ontario after COVID-19. The plan will ensure that Ontario's economic growth will be sustained once the emergency is over. The plan now begins with the Ontario Jobs and Recovery Committee.

What is the committee doing?

The committee is developing a plan that will get Ontario's economic engine back on track and focus on job creation, stimulate economic growth and protect our province from future threats. In fact, it is developing a long-term strategic goal to get the economy moving again. For all those who have lost their jobs or have had their businesses shut down, this committee will focus on getting them back on their feet once the pandemic is over. 

The Committee will be consulting with a wide variety of people to assess the impact of COVID-19 on the provincial economy and develop an action plan to move forward, including business associations, chambers of commerce, municipal leaders, corporate leaders, small business owners, and entrepreneurs.

What is the Ontario's Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19?

With many people losing their jobs, the government launched Ontario's Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19. This is a $17 billion package with funding targeted to help families and a variety of sectors across the province.

  • $3.3 billion in more health care resources, 
  • $3.7 billion to support people and jobs,
  • relief of $6 billion by temporarily deferring taxes for 100,000 Ontario businesses,
  • $1.9 billion to allow employers to defer Workplace Safety and Insurance Board payments, and
  • $1.8 billion to defer municipal education property tax payments.

Emergency assistance Program

The government is also providing $52 million from the package to better support individuals and families in financial crisis through social assistance. This funding will support those who are not able to access federal assistance to cover needs such as food costs, rent, medicine and other essential services during this time. Individuals can easily apply online for assistance. Apply here

What about small businesses?

The Ontario government has also worked with the federal government to develop the Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Loan that will enable up to $40 billion in lending, supported through Export Development Canada and the Business Development Bank. This new program will help businesses meet cash flow requirements through guaranteed loans.

For more information, News Release.

PREC is in partnership with: SITEWEBFINAL