June 23, 2020

Dear ABLE BC Members and Industry Colleagues,

Here’s what you’ll find inside today’s update:

  • Recap of last week’s updates
  • Updated Provincial Health Officer Order for Liquor and Food Primaries
  • Important Update: Hospitality Insurance Program
  • Clarification: Hospitality Pricing Discount
  • Hospitality Pricing: send your thanks to the Attorney General
  • Businesses call on Labour Minister to urgently act and extend temporary layoff timeframe
  • Short survey: COVID-19 layoffs and temporary layoff deadline
  • LDB Extension of P5 price change submission deadline
  • COVID-19 Tourism Workforce Recovery Toolkit
  • BC Hospitality Foundation Online Auction

Find all past updates from ABLE BC here.

As always, if you have any additional questions or need to reach us you can email: jeff@ablebc.ca or danielle@ablebc.ca.

Recap of last week’s updates

Here’s what you may have missed from ABLE BC last week:

Announcement on June 16: pubs, bars, restaurants able to purchase liquor at discounted wholesale price effective July 20.

Update on June 16:

  • Deloitte Final Report Released: BCLDB Wholesale Operations Review
  • Canada Emergency Response Benefit Extended
  • New Canada Emergency Business Account Eligibility
  • BWI Business World: new PPE and PHO approved plexiglass barriers, shields, and masks
  • ABLE BC in the news: BC lifts restrictions on bars and clubs
  • Hospitality Vancouver Association applauds Vancouver City Council move to support Vancouver’s nighttime economy

Update on June 19:

  • Hospitality pricing: send your thanks to the Attorney General
  • Western Financial Group: Employee Benefits Program Update
  • BC to allow cannabis stores to have transparent windows
  • LDB Customer Updates: hospitality pricing
  • ABLE BC in the news
  • Implications of BC’s new hospitality pricing system for wineries
  • Province seeks public input on economic recovery
  • Province extends Temporary Rental Supplement
  • Labour Minister rejects further extension to temporary layoff timeframe
  • BC Premier optimistic about moving to Phase 3 ‘sometime next week’

Find all past ABLE BC updates here.

Updated Provincial Health Officer Order for Liquor and Food Primaries

On June 19, the Provincial Health Officer released an updated public order for liquor and food primaries. This order repeals and replaces the previous order made on June 10, 2020.

Download the new public order here.

Definition of physical barrier: Most importantly, the public order defines what a physical barrier is: a barrier, which is designed, installed, and maintained in accordance with WorkSafeBC guidelines.

The previous height requirement of 1.2m has been removed. Instead: “If there are physical barriers between tables or booths, the tops and bottoms of the physical barrier must be positioned so that the physical barriers block the transmission of droplets produced by breathing, talking, coughing or sneezing between patrons who are seated or standing at adjacent tables or booths.”

Social distancing clarification: The order clarifies patrons must be able to maintain a distance of 2 metres from other patrons, whether seated or standing, unless they are in the same party or they are separated by physical barriers.

Background music: The public order also clarifies that background music is not considered an event.

The order defines events as: “anything which gathers people together, whether on a one-time, regular, or irregular basis, including a ceremony or celebration of any type, reception, musical, theatrical or dance entertainment or performance, art show, magic show, puppet show, fashion show, book signing, reading, recitation, display, movie, film, dancing, singing, meeting, lecture, talk, educational session, auction, fundraising benefit, contest, quiz, game, rally, festival, presentation, demonstration, or sporting or other physical display, but does not include background music.

Events continue to be limited to 50 patrons. See additional guidelines in the public order.

Collecting patron contact information: While you are still not required to collect information from patrons (unless you do so in the ordinary course of business), the new order requires you to collect contact information if you host an event.

Specifically: “If there is an event on the premises, you must collect the first and last name and telephone number, or email address, of one member of every party of patrons, and you must retain this information for thirty days, in the event that there is a need for contact tracing on the part of the medical health officer.”

We recommend reviewing the updated public order to ensure your establishment is in compliance with all guidelines.

Find WorkSafeBC protocols for restaurants, cafes, and pubs here.

Important Update: Hospitality Insurance Program

Yesterday, we shared an important update about ABLE BC and Western Financial Group Hospitality Insurance Program.

Read the full update here. A summary is provided below.

Over the past 12 months, we have seen drastic changes within the insurance market for beverage-focused hospitality. Unfortunately, most insurers are no longer providing coverage for beverage-focused hospitality businesses in Canada.

As you may already know from Western Financial Group, the beverage portion of our Hospitality Insurance Program (HIP) did not retain full insurer participation for the 2020 renewal and has been significantly challenged in accessing capacity elsewhere.

Despite our significant efforts to make HIP work for all members, in order to secure the program’s future viability and retain coverage for as many members as possible, Western Financial Group has had to restructure HIP Beverage into a fully insured portfolio program .

For those members not offered renewal terms, WFG is working to obtain support for your insurance requirements through a Managing General Agent.

We strongly encourage you to reach out to your WFG representative immediately to discuss your renewal terms.

For those who need it, ABLE BC is working closely with hospitality team at HUB International to provide members with replacement coverage. For more information please contact:

Karim Chandani
HUB International Vice President Hospitality
Mobile: 1-604-209-1906

Marion Haralds
HUB International Insurance Brokers Commercial Account Manager
DIRECT: 604-845-4906

We recommend you contact HUB by Friday, June 26.

We know how frustrating this news will be for many of you. We want you to know we are doing everything we can to support you in finding affordable insurance amid this unprecedented change to the global insurance market.

If you have any other questions or concerns about this, please contact Jeff: jeff@ablebc.ca.

Clarification: Hospitality Pricing Discount

Last week, we shared with you a historic and exciting announcement: Attorney General David Eby announced that, effective July 20th, hospitality licensees will be able to temporarily purchase liquor products at a discounted wholesale price.

This policy will remain in place until March 31, 2021, at which time the program will be reviewed.

ABLE BC estimates that this new pricing structure will reduce the cost of liquor products for pubs and restaurants by up to 20 per cent, which could translate into about five per cent savings that goes directly to their bottom line.

We want to clarify: this is not a 20% discount on wholesale price. Hospitality licensees will get wholesale price – which on average, will translate to a 20% reduction in current liquor costs.

Read more about hospitality pricing here.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact ABLE BC: jeff@ablebc.ca or danielle@ablebc.ca.

Hospitality Pricing: send your thanks to the Attorney General

Earlier this week, we were extraordinarily pleased to announce a historic liquor policy change. After years of advocacy from ABLE BC and our partners on the Business Technical Advisory Panel, BC’s hospitality licensees will soon be able to purchase liquor products at wholesale price.

You can read more details here.

On behalf of ABLE BC’s Board of Directors, staff, and members, we are deeply grateful for Attorney General David Eby’s personal involvement in making this change happen. Our industry is immensely grateful to him and his team for being our industry’s champion when we need in most.

As a show of appreciation, please take a moment to write to Attorney General to let him know what this change will mean to your business. You may reach him at AG.Minister@gov.bc.ca.

Businesses call on Labour Minister to urgently act and extend temporary layoff timeframe

A group of industry associations, including ABLE BC, recently wrote to Minister of Labour Harry Bains, requesting government to once again extend the temporary layoff provision for at least a further 13-week period through to August 31. 

In a letter received last week, Minister Bains reiterated that there are no plans for a further extension to the temporary layoff time limit.

Frankly, this is unacceptable amid this crisis. Rest assured we continue to press for an extension to the temporary layoff timeframe.

A second letter was sent to Minister Bains on June 22, expressing the urgency of the situation and again requesting an extension to the temporary layoff time limits to August 31, 2020, along with an additional 6 weeks once emergency orders are lifted.

Download a copy of the letter here.

Read the BC Chamber of Commerce’s news releaseBusinesses province-wide call on Labour Minister to urgently act to avoid more employee terminations and forced small business bankruptcies.

Short survey: COVID-19 layoffs and temporary layoff deadline

With the current temporary layoff deadline fast approaching, how will forced terminations and severance payouts impact your recovery?

As discussed above, the Province has thus far declined to extend the 16-week period for temporary layoffs. This means that in a couple of weeks many employers in BC will be faced with the prospect of terminating employees (and delivering severance payouts) before they are fully reopen.

We want to know what impact this will have on your business and team.

This survey will take under 2 minutes to complete and closes on June 26.

LDB Extension of P5 price change submission deadline

The LDB has shared with us the following update:

The LDB is extending its price change submission deadline for Period 5/August from previously June 19 to June 24. The price change/s will take effect on August 2nd. 

Vendors, agents and manufacturers now have until 5 p.m. on June 24th, 2020 to make any changes to their wholesale price for Period 5/August. 

The LDB’s hospitality customers will be able to purchase liquor at the wholesale price beginning July 20, 2020. This temporary regulatory change – which will be in effect until March 31, 2021 – was approved to provide support to the liquor and hospitality operators significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Manufacturers who sell direct to hospitality customers (bars, restaurants, hotels, etc.) must also charge wholesale price as of July 20, 2020. 

For more information on price change schedules please contact: wholesalepricing@bcldb.com.

COVID-19 Tourism Workforce Recovery Toolkit

In an ongoing effort to provide guidance and support to the 200,000 tourism operators across the country devastated by the impacts of COVID-19 Tourism HR Canada will launch the Tourism Workforce Recovery Toolkit via a webinar event taking place Wednesday, June 24 (details below).

The COVID-19 Tourism Workforce Recovery Toolkit is a practical, web-based program that includes tools, downloadable content and presentations, all designed to give tourism operators the knowledge resources they need to rebound and succeed.

Some of the modules included in this toolkit are:

  • Communications
  • Workforce
  • Budgeting & Finance
  • Marketing
  • Strategic Planning

Learn more about the toolkit.

Webinar on June 24: From Recovery to Resiliency – How Tourism Operators Can Learn, Grow and Thrive Post-Pandemic

Hosted by Tourism HR Canada President and CEO Philip Mondor, this one-hour webinar will provide guidance, support, and practical tools to the 200,000 tourism operators across the country devastated by the impacts of COVID-19.

With a focus on labour-related challenges and opportunities key to moving from recovery to renewed growth and innovation, this webinar will also serve as the formal launch of the free web-based Tourism Workforce Recovery Toolkit.

The session will introduce participants to crucial features in the Toolkit as well as actionable advice on how to implement the content most relevant to their recovery needs.

Webinar Details:

  • Date: Wednesday, June 24, 2020
  • Time: 10am – 11am (Pacific Time)
  • Register here

BC Hospitality Foundation Online Auction

The BC Hospitality Foundation is hosting an online silent auction, as part of the Reconnect 2020 event on June 27.

The list of fantastic items to bid on includes:

  • a VIP suite for a game at BC Place
  • a personalized tour and tasting at Mission Hill Family Estate
  • accommodation for 2 in a unique treehouse on Vancouver Island
  • a case of premium BC wines

…and many more great options. The auction will accept bids until June 30 at 6:00 pm. The full list of auction items may be viewed here.

The auction will be featured as part of the Reconnect 2020 event being held at the Harbour Convention Centre on June 27from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm.

Reconnect 2020 is a hybrid virtual/in-person event focusing on the hospitality, tourism, meeting, conference, and event industries. Click here to learn more about the event, or to purchase tickets (attending by Zoom is FREE and you will be able to interact through chat by joining the ZOOM meeting here). 

The auction is a fundraiser for the BCHF. Our industry’s charity has had to cancel all in-person events for 2020 due to the pandemic, and while numerous businesses in the hospitality industry have stepped up to help the BCHF, their initiatives won’t make up for the lost revenue.

Thanks for supporting the BCHF in the past. If you choose to participate in the auction, good luck!

For more information:

Public Health Agency of Canada Website

Updates from the Government of British Columbia

Updates and Resources from WorkSafeBC

Updates and Resources from ABLE BC

Human Resources & Occupational Health & Safety Info from go2HR

If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact ABLE BC:604-688-5560 or info@ablebc.ca.

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