Heart of Orléans BIA

COVID-19 Resources for Small and Medium Businesses in the Heart of Orléans

COVID-19 resources for small and medium businesses, employers and employees have been collected below to help Heart of Orléans BIA Members and Associate Members during the Coronavirus pandemic.


Please note that information is changing rapidly. The links below are intended to direct you to the most up-to-date information.


Regular updates will follow. Please sign up for the latest COVID-19 news in Orléans, Ottawa by clicking here.

1. My Health

What is the current situation in Ottawa?
Learn how the Ministry of Health is helping to keep Ontarians safe during the 2019 Novel Coronavirus outbreak. Find out how to protect yourself and how to recognize symptoms.
COVID-19 Updates, prevention and risk, symptoms and treatment, being prepared, travel advice, and Canada’s response.
Dr. Vera Etches is the Medical Officer of Health for Ottawa Public Health (OPH).
In Spring 2020, Ottawa Public Health and many other partners came to United Way East Ontario to ask for help protecting our region’s most vulnerable. In response, we formed Facing Forward to provide masks for those most in need.

2. My Business

The deadline for businesses to pay any income tax amounts that become owing or due after March 18, 2020 and before September 1, 2020 has been extended to September 1, 2020. This means you will not be assessed any penalties or interest if your balance due is paid by September 1, 2020.
The program provides forgivable loans to qualifying commercial property owners to cover a percentage of monthly rent payments that are payable by eligible small business tenants who are experiencing financial hardship during.
The Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers is a three-month measure that will allow eligible employers to reduce the amount of payroll deductions required to be remitted to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
As a Canadian employer whose business has been affected by COVID-19, you may be eligible for a subsidy of employee wages.
Work-Sharing (WS) is an adjustment program designed to help employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity that is beyond the control of the employer.
Through this program, Export Development Canada (EDC) and the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) will provide direct lending and other types of financial support at market rates to businesses with viable business models whose access to financing would otherwise be restricted.
To ensure that small businesses have access to the capital they need to see them through the current challenges, the Government of Canada has launched the new Canada Emergency Business Account, which has been implemented by eligible financial institutions in cooperation with Export Development Canada (EDC).
To help businesses prepare for and manage through a potential COVID-19 escalation in Canada, the Canadian Chamber has developed a brief guide source from a number of best practice documents and designed to assist business planning and continuity efforts.
This program posts challenges seeking near-to-market solutions from small and medium-sized businesses (fewer than 500 staff) that need financial support from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) to refine and sell their product or solution to meet a COVID-19 related need.
Increase your cash flow to pay your suppliers
This initiative is implemented by the six regional development agencies, which are familiar with their regions’ economic realities and are often the first point of contact for people at the local level.
COVID-19, also known as novel coronavirus, is a serious public health concern. Employers will be at the forefront dealing with a multitude of COVID-19-related issues, which could cause severe business disruptions. Employers are advised to prepare contingency plans to manage the COVID-19 novel coronavirus in North America.
Small Business Resources for Dealing with COVID-19. Everything you need to know to keep your business safe.
Various resources for the workplace including guidance, recommendations, posters, etc.
Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is recommending that any food premises (including restaurants, take out, take out counters, drive-thru, bakeries, fast food establishments, etc.) delivering food and/or providing take out during the COVID-19 pandemic take added precautions to protect their health and the health of those around them.
Read the list of essential workplaces in response to COVID-19 (2019 novel coronavirus).
As cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Ottawa, Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is recommending that all stores that remain open take specific actions.

Catherine Fair, Master Coach from Rhapsody Strategies is offering a free 1/2 hour chat with Heart of Orléans BIA businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Rhapsody Strategies , an award winning business coaching firm based in Ottawa, has worked extensively with BIA’s and Chambers throughout Ontario. They either have in the past or are currently working with The Heart of Orléans, Barrhaven, Downtown Rideau, Kitchener and Newmarket BIA’s as well as with numerous chambers of commerce. Their work typically involves developing board-wide strategic plans along with committee-specific strategies.


Rhapsody’s coaches work with business owners in one-on-one settings to help them realize their true business and personal potential. Business owners who find that the phrase “You’re meant for more” resonates with them, are typical Rhapsody Strategies’ clients.

Is your company weathering the COVID-19 crisis? Do you need help getting your business to work in an online environment? Terradare Solutions is a local Ottawa business that provides services to clients locally and internationally. They provide automation, cloud services and creative technology solutions to help their clients increase their efficiencies through the use of technology and sound business processes. Given the current climate, businesses are having to think strategically, re-tool and pivot to ensure that their business both stays a float and provides ongoing revenue. We encourage you to reach out to Terradare for a complimentary call to find out how they might assist you with your online technology requirements i.e. setting up or refining an online store, payment processing, delivery process etc.


To schedule a call, send an email to Nicole Darechuk at [email protected] or submit a request direct through the Terradare Website.

Use these free tip sheets as guidance while operating during a pandemic, including the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Each document offers health and safety tips and good practices, for both employers and workers, specific to each industry or sector.
To help support workplaces during the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety have made these online products and resources free of charge.
As Ontario begins to reopen the economy, we encourage all Ottawa businesses to review the information in this Business Reopening Toolkit. This document has been prepared by the City of Ottawa, in consultation with Ottawa Public Health. It is intended to provide guidance to businesses to prepare for safe reopening, subject to direction from the Province of Ontario, and should not be construed as legal advice or to replace specific instructions that may be issued by Ottawa Public Health or the Province.
Learn how you can create a plan to help protect your workers and others from novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). This guide is for employers. Whether you are currently operating or planning for your workers to return to work, the guide will help you develop a plan to work safely.
Find sector-specific guidelines and posters to help protect workers, customers and the general public from coronavirus (COVID-19) in Ontario.
Having an exit strategy in place for after COVID-19 can help you be prepared to hit the ground running and rebuild. If you’re not sure what your coronavirus exit plan should include, this guide can help with getting your business back on track.

Back to BIA Mentorship Program – As BIA businesses start coming back to work, we would like to offer you the opportunity to mentor with an expert. We have partnered with a few local mentors who have graciously offered a 1/2 hour free consultation to interested businesses to respond to questions, offer advice and/or share resources.

Ottawa’s reopening plan is based on guidance from Ottawa Public Health and aligns with the Province of Ontario’s plan to gradually relax its emergency orders.

Three Provincial programs you should know about:


  • Ontario Small Business Support Grant – provides eligible businesses with “dollar for dollar funding” starting at $10,000 to a maximum of $20,000.
  • Property Tax and Energy Bill Rebates – These rebates will also be in addition to other rebates you may apply for through utilities themselves.
  • PPE Grants of up to $1000 – Officially called “Ontario’s Main Street Relief Grant: PPE support”, this one is for businesses with 2-9 employees to compensate for unexpected costs to buy protective equipment for staff or clients.

3. My Family

If you have stopped working because of COVID-19, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) may provide you with temporary income support.
When unforeseen financial circumstances impact your ability to make regular mortgage payments, it’s important for you to take quick action.
Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits can provide you with up to 15 weeks of financial assistance if you cannot work for medical reasons.
Germs are types of microbes, such as bacteria or viruses, which can cause diseases. They are spread directly from person to person, or indirectly by touching a surface that has been contaminated with them.
The Ontario Legislature has passed the Employment Standards Amendment Act (Infectious Disease Emergencies), 2020 to provide job-protected leave to employees in isolation or quarantine due to COVID-19, or those who need to be away from work to care for children because of school or daycare closures or to care for other relatives.
In order to decrease transmission of COVID-19 in Ottawa, Ottawa Public Health is now recommending that all residents of Ottawa practise physical (social) distancing. Physical (social) distancing involves taking steps to limit the number of people you come into close contact with. This will help to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
There are things you can do to prepare for this pandemic, and ensure you are prepared in case you or someone in your house becomes ill.
Learn about funding that families can apply for if they have children who are not in school or child care because of coronavirus (COVID-19). Find out if you are eligible and how to apply.