Government of Canada announces creation of Essential Services Contingency Reserve through Safe Restart Agreement

News release

July 21, 2020 - Ottawa, Ontario - Public Services and Procurement Canada

The Government of Canada is working to ensure that essential service organizations have access to the key supplies that they need to keep their members safe during COVID-19 as our economy reopens. 

Today, the Honourable Anita Anand, Minister of Public Services and Procurement, announced that, as part of the Safe Restart Agreement, the Government of Canada is establishing the Essential Services Contingency Reserve, to which essential service organizations can apply for temporary, urgent access to personal protective equipment (PPE) and other critical supplies. 

The Contingency Reserve complements existing PPE support being provided to frontline health care workers by the Public Health Agency of Canada. It helps other essential service organizations bridge urgent, short-term gaps in their supplies to avoid any significant disruptions in services to Canadians. Eligible associations and organizations will be able to apply online for a range of equipment, available for purchase at cost. Support provided to provincial or territorial governments will not be cost recovered. Full details on the Contingency Reserve, including the application process and eligibility criteria, are available on the Essential Services Contingency Reserve web page.

This reserve marks another important step in providing support to help Canada manage through the COVID-19 pandemic.


“Across the country, organizations of all types are providing a wide range of essential services—from keeping food on our tables to caring for vulnerable populations and shipping goods from coast to coast to coast. Through the Essential Services Contingency Reserve, the federal government seeks to ensure that these organizations can continue to operate if they have short-term challenges in obtaining PPE when all other sources of supply are unavailable. Canadians can rest assured that they will continue to have access to the essential services on which they depend as the Canadian economy continues to recover from the pandemic.”

The Honourable Anita Anand
Minister of Public Services and Procurement

Quick facts

  • The Government of Canada continues to procure PPE and medical equipment on a priority basis for frontline healthcare workers.

  • Organizations identified as essential service providers, as defined by Public Safety Canada, are eligible to apply to access the Contingency Reserve.

  • The Contingency Reserve will serve as an emergency backstop to help organizations bridge short-term gaps in their supply of PPE.

  • The Contingency Reserve will stock PPE and critical supplies, including KN95 respirators, surgical masks, non-medical cloth and disposable masks, gowns, face shields, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and gloves.

  • The Government of Canada recently launched the PPE Supply Hub, where organizations can access information and resources, including consumer guidance on how to buy or sell PPE.

  • The Safe Restart Agreement will see over $19 billion invested in protecting the health of Canadians, getting people back to work, and preparing for a potential second wave.

Associated links


Cecely Roy
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Anita Anand

Media Relations
Public Services and Procurement Canada

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