November 05, 2020

Dear ABLE BC Members and Industry Colleagues,

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

  • Recap of last week’s updates
  • BDL Update for Northern BC Customers
  • WorkSafeBC Risk Advisory: outdoor headers in enclosed patio spaces
  • Federal government announces new measures to help small and medium-sized businesses
  • Provincial small and medium-sized business recovery grants now available
  • BC regional health officers can issue COVID-19 restrictions in their own jurisdictions
  • Free go2HR Safety Basics Assessment: build and improve your OHS program
  • Canada United Small Business Relief Fund: $5000 grants available
  • 2020 Fortify Conference

Find all past updates from ABLE BC here.

As always, if you have any additional questions or need to reach us you can email: or

Recap of last week’s updates

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

  • COVID-19 Update on October 29:
    • Halloween during COVID-19 and PHO public orders
    • Industry recommendation: masks for front-of-house staff
    • 2020 Provincial Election Update
    • Download updated Liquor Primary Reopening Best Practices Handbook
    • Complete the 2020 BC Liquor Conference Survey
    • BC Hospitality Foundation lottery ends on Sunday
    • Challenges with Small and Medium Sized Business Recovery Grant
    • Changes to Canada Emergency Business Account
    • BC Tourism Task Force Report: The Future of Travel
    • Provincial state of emergency extended
    • Managing cold and flu season during COVID-19

Find all past updates here.

BDL Update for Northern BC Customers

BDL has shared with us the following update for Northern BC customers:

Dear Valued Customer,

As BDL Alberta prepares for the launch of SAP, please see the info below related to next week’s ordering and delivery schedule:

  • All orders dated for delivery on Friday, November 13, 2020 and Monday, November 16, 2020, order and payment cut off is 1:00 pm on Tuesday, November 10, 2020
  • All orders dated for delivery on Tuesday, November 17, 2020, and later, follow the regular order cut off and payment process
  • Please continue to order online by visiting our ordering website at or with a customer service representative at 1-800-661-2337

We appreciate your continued support and understanding.

Thank you,

Brewers Distributors, Ltd.Customer Contact Centre: 1-800-661-2337 or email

WorkSafeBC Risk Advisory: outdoor headers in enclosed patio spaces

WorkSafeBC has shared with us the following new resource and risk advisory: Carbon monoxide exposure from heaters in outdoor dining spaces.

What is the potential risk?

During the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurants, bars, and other dining venues have been opening patio or outdoor seating for patrons in order to increase distancing and take advantage of natural ventilation.

As the weather becomes colder, employers may wish to enclose these outdoor spaces and supply heat using space or portable heaters. Many types of heaters are available, including wall and ceiling models, stand-alone floor heaters, and table heaters. They can be supplied by natural gas, propane, or electricity (infrared heaters). Using combustion heaters (e.g., propane or natural gas) in enclosed spaces can expose workers to carbon monoxide (CO) gas.

For more information, including how to reduce the risk in your workplace, please refer to the WorkSafeBC resource.

Federal government announces new measures to help small and medium-sized businesses

On November 3, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced new measures to help small and medium-sized businesses cope during the second wave of COVID-19.

At a press conference on Tuesday morning, the Prime Minister said that the CanExport program will be pivoting to provide new support to small and medium-sized businesses on e-commerce, online platforms, and virtual trade events.

There will also be additional resources provided to help businesses navigate changing trade rules and dedicated help for women and Indigenous entrepreneurs.
Chrystia Freeland, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance announced further legislation that will put new support measures in place to help businesses get through the second wave.

The Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy will provide direct rent and mortgage interest support to tenants and property owners until June 2021. Minister Freeland said the new rent subsidy will support business, charities, and non-profits that have suffered a revenue drop by providing support up to a maximum of 65% of eligible expenses until December 19, 2020. The legislation allows for retroactive claims to September 27, 2020.

In addition, the government is also proposing new lockdown supports, Minister Freeland said. This means that the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy can provide an additional 25% to qualifying businesses that are subject to a lockdown and must shut their doors or significantly restrict actives under public health orders.

Combined, these new measures will provide hard-hit businesses that are subject to a lockdown with rent support of up to 90%.

The government is also proposing that the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy be extended until June 2021. This will continue to protect jobs by helping businesses keep employees on the payroll and allow them to rehire workers, said Freeland. The subsidy will remain at the current rate of up to 65% of eligible wages until December 19, 2020.

Provincial small and medium-sized business recovery grants now available

Grants of $10,000 to $30,000 are now available to BC businesses through the Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grants.

Learn more and apply now.

We understand there are challenges for some businesses with the grants.

ABLE BC, BCHA, Restaurants Canada, and TIABC recently sent a brief to the Province with several recommendations on how to amend criteria for tourism and hospitality businesses trying to quality for the Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grant.

Download the letter here.

The letter points out several criteria that make it difficult for many tourism and hospitality businesses to qualify. Example: employ between two and 149 people in BC for at least four months of the calendar year.

We will update you as this issue progresses. Learn more about the grants here.

BC regional health officers can issue COVID-19 restrictions in their own jurisdictions

On October 30, Dr. Bonnie Henry released an amendment to her public health order around public and private gatherings.

Part of the amendment includes giving regional medical health officers the power to issue COVID-19 restrictions for their own jurisdictions instead of being bound to province-wide rules.

Dr. Henry states the order was made in recognition of the fact that “the risk differs in different regions of the province and that medical health officers are in the best position to assess local circumstances and to determine whether or not additional or more restrictive steps need to be taken.”

Henry states such orders by health officers could mean further prohibitions or the imposing of more restrictive limitations or conditions, “with respect to gatherings and events in the geographic area of the province, or a part of the geographic area of the province, for which the medical health officer is designated.”

For more information, please refer to the public order.

Free go2HR Safety Basics Assessment: build and improve your OHS program

Get your health and safety program in shape and ready for the winter season, with the help of go2HR’s free Safety Basics Assessment.

With so much attention being focused on COVID-19 and developing safety plans in recent months, other routine aspects of occupational health and safety may have been overlooked. Whether you are preparing for winter operations to commence, or looking further ahead to next season, take a moment to assess your workplace health and safety program and make sure that you have the basics in place. 

Complete go2HR’s free, online Safety Basics Assessment today! Work through the 13 straightforward questions and refer to the helpful prompts, as you go along. 15 minutes is all it takes to perform a health check of your organization.

Then, receive your personalized report with practical tips and resources to help you build and improve your occupational health and safety program. Review the report in your own time, whenever is convenient, and start to get your program back in shape! 

Got a question about your assessment results or need help?

go2HR’s team of H&S professionals offer free advice to BC’s tourism and hospitality industry on a wide range of occupational H&S matters. Connect with an expert today by emailing or via phone: 604-633-9787.

Canada United Small Business Relief Fund: $5000 grants available

Created by RBC, Canada United is a movement to support local businesses in communities across the country. The Canada United Small Business Relief Fund (CUSBRF) was established to help small businesses offset the cost of expenses to reopen safely or adopt digital technologies to move more of their business online.

Over $14 Million has been contributed by the Federal Government, RBC, and Canada United partners to support recovery efforts due to COVID-19. They are now able to extend relief grants to more small businesses and restart accepting grant applications from small businesses across all Provinces for expenses incurred no earlier than March 15, 2020.

Learn more and apply here.

2020 Fortify Conference

Don’t miss the virtual version of the 2020 Fortify conference and trade show for those in the business of fermenting and distilling – November 24, 2020.

The 2020 Fortify format will give you an opportunity to present and promote your products and services to prospective and current customers, not only on the day of Fortify (November 24) when the virtual trade show will be open all day with dedicated trade show time, but the platform will remain accessible until December 31st at no additional cost. 

Learn more at:

Join the fight! Become a member today.


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