DAN CEARNS The Standard
SCUGOG: The Scugog Chamber of Commerce is making moves to try to slow the spread of COVID-19. In a press release, the chamber announced their Awards of Excellence event, which was originally scheduled to be held on Thursday, March 26th, has been postponed. “We will be arranging a new date for the Awards of Excellence, once we find out when the facilities are available to book again.” In order to protect chamber staff, the Scugog chamber also announced they will be “implementing social distancing measures, through a combination of remote and limited office-hours, as needed.” “We will continue to provide you with information and updates via email, [our] website and social media,” chamber officials wrote. “We will be working with our members on assisting to get our community back up and running as best and as quickly as possible.” Regarding the current situation of their upcoming Home and Garden show, scheduled for early May, the Chamber stated they are in “wait-and-see mode.” “We are continuing to take vendor submissions with a full refund policy in place, if the show needs to be cancelled, because of the COVID-19 virus shut down.” The Scugog chamber encourages people to support local businesses during this time. “Where possible please [be] sure to support your local members and businesses. It is vitally important.” Meanwhile, Durham Regional Chair John Henry recently sent a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario Premier Doug Ford regarding how COVID-19 is affecting local businesses. “Many businesses are suffering financial impact. The lost revenue or cancelled services are causing extreme uncertainty. Some business owners are worried about permanent closure,” the letter read. “Several local businesses have already reduced staffing levels, and with continuing decrease in demand for services, additional layoffs are imminent. Business owners are concerned about the long term effects of this crisis on their staff, including: the health impact of stress, the financial impact of reduced wages, the overall fear of returning to work, and the impact on their families.” In the letter, the Regional Chair also stressed “our business community urgently needs help from all levels of government.” On Wednesday, March 18th, Prime Minister Trudeau made an economic announcement regarding COVID-19. “These measures, delivered as part of the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, will provide up to $27 billion in direct support to Canadian workers and businesses, plus $55 billion to meet liquidity needs of Canadian businesses and households through tax deferrals, to help stabilize the economy,” read a press release from the Prime Minister’s office.