A Letter to the Province re: Small Business Lockdown

On Thursday, December 10, 2020, Carol Jolly, Executive Director of The Junction BIA, sent another letter to our elected officials, including Premier Doug Ford and Minister for Small Business Prabmeet Sarkaria. Included are specific recommendations that we and other Toronto BIAs are calling for to support small businesses.

Attn: Hon. Prabmeet Singh Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business & Red Tape Reduction and our Elected Officials

The Junction Business Improvement Area is one of Toronto’s 80+ BIAs. We represent over 200 small and medium-sized businesses and property owners locally.
 
We are writing to you today to provide feedback directly from a survey of Toronto small business owners and to request your support for small retailers through a series of specific measures, as follows:
 
Modification to the Lockdown to allow appointment-based shopping and in-person shopping to a limited number of patrons based on square footage while maintaining or enhancing the safety protocols such as contact tracing for small business. Fairness and equality need to be a priority to level the playing field between large and small retailers.
 
Additionally, requested measures applicable to all businesses:
 
Greater financial supports in an easy to access format when businesses are required to reduce hours or shut down, so they can remain solvent and re-open. We would request an increase to the Main Street Relief Grant to be a $2500 monthly infusion – with a one-time application process – to be ongoing through the pandemic;
 
Advanced notice of measures affecting businesses. More sufficient time needs to be given when orders are mandated to allow business operators, local and provincial enforcement agencies to sufficiently and responsibly react. We request that we receive an update by December 15th understanding if the Lockdown for the City of Toronto is going to be lifted, extended, or modified beyond December 21st;
 
A moratorium on commercial evictions needs to be mandated through to March 2021 to provide greater certainty through the challenging winter season.
 
We would welcome and appreciate any further dialogue. Thank you sincerely for your ongoing support of small and medium-sized businesses.
 
With regards,
Carol
 
Carol Jolly
Executive Director