Government of Canada invests over $2.5 million to support Windsor businesses impacted by illegal blockade
Support to help over 200 Windsor businesses recover as they reopen following Ambassador Bridge blockade
April 1, 2022 – Windsor, Ontario
The illegal blockade that shutdown the Ambassador Bridge hurt local businesses in Windsor. Many of these small businesses were forced to close or were unable to operate at normal levels, which resulted in financial losses. The Government of Canada is providing financial assistance to these businesses as they recover from the impact of this illegal blockade. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Government of Canada has supported small businesses and communities and will continue to help them with the supports they need to recover.
Today, on behalf of the Honourable Helena Jaczek, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), Irek Kusmierczyk, Member of Parliament for Windsor−Tecumseh, announced over $2.5 million in Government of Canada support to impacted businesses along and near the Huron Church Road corridor that faced hardships as a result of the illegal blockade.
With this FedDev Ontario funding, the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Centre, a division of Invest WindsorEssex, will provide small businesses with non-repayable contributions of up to $10,000 for costs not covered by other federal programs. This initiative will also be in collaboration with the City of Windsor, Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island.
This support will ensure that local, small businesses can recover costs such as utilities, insurance, bank charges, loss of inventory (e.g., spoiled food), wages, rent, and other extraordinary costs related to the repair or protection of a business due to the demonstrations.
To support the most vulnerable small businesses, eligible applicants impacted by the demonstrations will need to meet the following criteria: be located along and near the Huron Church Road corridor; have been unable to operate their business at normal levels during the blockade; have fewer than 100 employees; have intended to provide in-person client services during the demonstrations and could not transition to virtual services in the short-term; and be fully open, operating and providing in-person services at the time of application.
Additional details on eligibility criteria are available on the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Centre website.
The Government of Canada is helping small businesses and local communities recover, and building a strong and resilient economic recovery for Canadians.
“Our government’s investment of over $2.5 million to Invest WindsorEssex will ensure local small businesses in Windsor get the support they need. We recognize the toll this illegal blockade had on small businesses in Windsor, and this support will help affected small businesses recover and continue to serve and contribute to the community and economy.”
- The Honourable Helena Jaczek, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario
“Local businesses in my community of Windsor suffered serious losses due to the illegal blockade of the Ambassador Bridge. During this time, many were forced to reduce hours or close their doors to ensure staff safety and the security of their businesses. This federal funding will support our local businesses as they recover from the impacts of the protests.”
- Irek Kusmierczyk, Member of Parliament for Windsor−Tecumseh
"Small businesses are an integral part of our community and the backbone of the Windsor-Essex economy. Thank you to FedDev Ontario for supporting Windsor businesses that were impacted by the recent bridge blockade. Our organization is proud to administer this federal funding to local entrepreneurs and contribute to the economic recovery of the region.”
- Stephen MacKenzie, CEO and President, Invest WindsorEssex
“Entrepreneurs along Huron Church made it through the pandemic and were impacted by the illegal blockade, and subsequent security perimeter, which limited their business and impacted livelihoods. Today’s announcement is recognition of the contribution that the small business sector has on our local economy and the vital role they have in our community, especially in West Windsor and Sandwich Towne.”
- His Worship Drew Dilkens, Mayor, City of Windsor
Invest WindsorEssex is a not-for-profit organization supported by the City of Windsor and County of Essex and is responsible for advancing economic development to grow and sustain prosperity in the region. Its main focus is to develop and execute strategies to attract, retain, expand and help create businesses in the Windsor-Essex region.
Businesses eligible for this support will need to meet the eligibility criteria outlined by Invest WindsorEssex.
The Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program, the Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program and the Local Lockdown Program are also available and could provide wage and rent subsidies, and the Canada Recovery Hiring Program has been extended until May 7, 2022.
Office of the Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario
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