Essential Services Contingency Reserve
Organizations that provide essential services may request access to the Government of Canada’s Essential Services Contingency Reserve (ESCR). Learn about the contingency reserve, find eligibility requirements and access the application form.
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Through the ESCR, eligible essential service business or organizations may apply to receive personal protective equipment (PPE), non-medical masks and disinfection products to address urgent, short-term (45 days) needs. 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 critical, temporary gaps in their supplies to avoid any significant disruptions in services to Canadians. Supplies are provided on a cost-recovery basis to businesses or organizations that cannot access supplies through other means and when significant service disruptions are imminent. Support provided to provincial or territorial governments will not be cost recovered.
Before requesting support from the ESCR, your business or organization should visit the PPE supply hub for information on buying personal protective equipment, and explore all other sources of support, including existing support from within your sector and/or provincial or territorial governments.
Who can apply
To be eligible for the ESCR, your organization must provide essential services in 1 of the following areas:
- energy and utilities
- information and communication technologies
Additional details about the types of specific organizations included in each of these areas is provided in Public Safety Canada’s guidance on essential services and functions in Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Recognized organization or charity
In addition to being an essential services provider, your organization must be a legally registered Canadian business or organization (have a business number or charitable registration number).
During the application process, you will be required to demonstrate:
- that all other sources of support have been exhausted, including efforts to obtain:
- PPE through the marketplace
- support from within your essential services sector through industry associations or support agencies
- support from provincial or territorial governments
- specific types and quantities (based on factors such as number of staff and burn rate) of PPE and other critical supplies required, and where needed
- the appropriateness of requested supplies based on occupational health and safety requirements and public health guidance
- the criticality of your supply shortages, which means that:
- the need is urgent (for example, less than 3 weeks of supply on hand based on burn rate)
- there is imminent risk of disruption in your operations that would significantly affect Canadians
- a plan to fulfill your supply needs once ESCR support ends
How to apply
Before you apply
Before requesting support from the ESCR, your organization should visit the PPE supply hub for information on buying personal protective equipment, and explore all other sources of support, including existing support from within your sector and/or provincial or territorial governments.
Step 1: Register your organization
You will be asked to provide information on your organization or business as part of your account registration.
Section 1: Basic information about your organization
In section 1 of the registration form, you will be asked to provide your organization’s:
- registered name
- Canada Revenue Agency business number or charity registration number
- registered address
Section 2: Primary contact information
In section 2, you will be asked to provide a primary contact and their contact information. The primary contact provided may be contacted for further information as part of the review process.
Complete the registration form
If you are able to demonstrate the items outlined in the Who can apply section, complete the online form:Register your organization or business
After you complete this form
Once the form has been submitted, we will validate and assess your organizational or business information. Approval is based on the overall risk of impact and degree to which the segment of the sector is facing critical shortages. We will notify your organization by email of the status of your registration. You will be able to track the status of your request throughout the approval process.
Step 2: Request critical supplies
Once you receive notification that your registration has been approved, you will also receive login credentials to access the online catalogue to request the critical supplies your organization or business requires. You will also need to provide a rationale for the supplies you request. Requests are done using the online catalogue, where you may select the type and quantity of items that you require.
We will review your request and information provided, and contact you for further information as needed.
Step 3: Status of request and confirmation of purchase
The status of your request will be sent to you by email. The email will ask you to confirm that you are purchasing the approved supplies. After this confirmation, you will not be able to cancel or return items purchased.
If your business or organization’s application is successful, your request may be approved in full or in part based on the assessment and availability of requested supplies.
To ensure your organization has sufficient time to establish a critical supplies plan for ongoing needs, ESCR support will be provided for up to 45 days.
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