Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

COVID-19 Business Resource Centre

Last edited: March 19, 2021

We’re Here to Help You During the COVID-19 Crisis

If you’re a business in the Comox Valley join our e-newsletter for news and updates, including COVID-19 information.

Have a question that can’t be found on this website? Email Comox Valley Economic Development & Tourism at

For a compiled list of federal and provincial financial supports for businesses, organizations and industry, updated on an ongoing basis, click here.


Latest News & Current Updates

April 13Circuit Breaker Business Relief Grant

March 18Front-line workers prioritized as COVID-19 vaccine rollout accelerates

March 17Online grant program expands to support more businesses

March 10Buy BC funding application intake now open

February 24New infrastructure, jobs coming to communities hit hard by COVID-19

February 23Recovery grants support jobs in rural communities

Upcoming FREE Webinars:

View our workshops and events calendar here


Small Business Resources

Please find links below with resources for small businesses from a variety of government and industry sources around COVID-19 and emergency preparedness.

For a compiled list of federal and provincial financial supports for businesses, organizations and industry, updated on an ongoing basis, click here.

* New Circuit Breaker Business Relief Grant, click here to learn more.

For a PDF version comprehensive list of supports for businesses and individuals, click here


BC Economic Development Association: COVID-19 Resources for BC Businesses here

  • COVID-19: 7 steps to sustain your business through the disruption here
  • COVID-19 Business Impacts Survey Results here
  • Business Retention and Expansion Tools here

Chambers of Commerce

  • BC Chamber of Commerce: News & events here
  • Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce: COVID-19 resources for businesses here
  • Canadian Chamber of Commerce: Canadian Business Resilience Network here
  • CGLCC – Canada’s LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce: News & events here

Go2HR: Health and safety resources here

  • Job Board (browse jobs by sector) here
  • Available courses here
  • COVID-19 Human Resource information & updates here
  • COVID-19 FAQs for Tourism Employees here

Google: for businesses affected by COVID-19 – Guidance on updating info and temporary closures here

Innovation Canada: Based on your story, learn what help is available here

  • Find COVID-19 support and other programs and services here

Innovation Island: Digital Economy Response Program here

Small Business BC: COVID-19 Small Business Resources here

  • BC Business COVID-19 Support Service here
  • Small Business Marketplace here
  • Supports for Small Businesses in BC here

Work Safe BC: Information and resources for employers and employees here and latest announcements here


Re-Opening Resources

BC’s response to COVID-19 here


BC’s Restart Plan: main page and resources here

  • Current Province-wide restrictions here
  • Phase 3 information here
  • PDF version of plan – next steps to move BC through the pandemic here
  • BC COVID-19 Go-Forward Management Strategy here
  • Key Steps to Safely Operating Your Business or Organization and Reducing COVID-19 Transmission here

BC Ministry of Health COVID-19 Guidance here

  • Gathering and Events (February 10) here
  • Visitation and Visitor Apeal and Review Order (February 5) here
  • Industrial Projects Restart (January 12) here
  • Food and Liquor Serving Premises and Retail Establishments which Sell Liquor (December 30) here
  • Workplace Safety (December 16) here
  • Restaurants, Pubs, Bars and Nightclubs (July 31) here
  • Vending Markets (May 29) here

Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety: Use these Tip Sheets by sector as guidance while operating during a pandemic here

  • Agriculture here
  • Food Processing here
  • Restaurants and Food Services here
  • Retail here
  • Disinfection of Touchpoints here


  • COVID-19 and Returning to Safe Operation here
  • Protocols for Returning to Operation by sector:
    • Arts and cultural facilities here
    • Offices here
    • Restaurants, cafes, and pubs here
    • Retail here
    • Personal services here
  • FAQs for returning to safe operation here
  • Preventing Exposure to COVID-19 in the Workplace: A Guide for Employers here
  • Media Backgrounder: Support for workplaces resuming operation here
  • COVID-19 Safety Plan here

More helpful resources:

  • Town of Comox Temporary Patios & Parklet Programs here
  • BCRFA Restaurant COVID-19 Resources and downloadable guides here
  • Canadian Federation of Independent Business: Pandemic Operational Plan Template here
  • BC Economic Development Association (BCEDA): Business Re-opening Template here
  • BC Centre of Disease Control signage & posters here
  • WorkSafeBC posters & signs here


Financial Assistance Resources

Below are links to financial assistance and support programs for businesses and individuals.


Government of Canada: Support to Businesses here and Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan here

  • Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA): announcement here
  • Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF): an initiative implemented by the six regional development agencies to help mitigate the financial pressure experienced by businesses and organizations to allow them to continue their operations, and to support projects by businesses, organizations, and communities to prepare now for a successful recovery.
    RRRF Eligibility Questionnaire here
    Applications are now being accepted under 2 streams:
    1. Regional Economy – Western Diversification: providing eligible SMEs (those that do not qualify for the CEBA) with an interest-free repayable contribution of up to $40,000. More details here
    2. Community Futures Emergency Loan Program: SMEs in rural communities can apply for loans of up to $40,000 through local Community Futures organizations. Visit Community Futures Strathcona
  • Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA): to provide interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs during a period where their revenues have been temporarily reduced.
  • Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy(CEWS): a fund to help businesses keep and return workers to their payroll through the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic by providing 75% wage subsidy to eligible employers for up to 12 weeks, retroactive to March 15, 2020.  Calculate your subsidy amount here. Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s guide to applying for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy here
    • July 17 update: Adapting the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy to Protect Jobs and Promote Growth here
    • July 22 CEWS Questions and Answers Presentation here
  • Canada’s Regional Development Agencies (RDAs): $675 million to give financing support to small and medium-sized businesses that are unable to access other COVID-19 business supports.
  • Futurpreneur Canada: $20.1 million to continue supporting young entrepreneurs across Canada who are facing challenges due to COVID-19.
  • Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP): National Research Council Canada (NRC) COVID-19 programs.
  • Work-Sharing: 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.

Province of BC: Financial supports in response to COVID-19 here

Business Development Bank of Canada: Resources here

Support for entrepreneurs impacted by the coronavirus COVID-19. With flexible and tailored solutions, BDC can help you through this situation with the right financing and advice for your business.

BC Hydro: offers billing help during outbreak here

  • COVID-19 Relief Fund for Small Businesses here (application form to open week of April 13)
  • The COVID-19 Customer Assistance Program provides customers the option to defer bill payments or arrange for flexible payment plans with no penalty. Customers are encouraged to call BC Hydro’s customer team at 1 800 BC HYDRO (1 800 224 9376) to discuss bill payment options. Commercial customers will be eligible for relief on a case by case basis.
  • Customers facing temporary financial hardship and possible disconnection of their service due to job loss, illness, or loss of a family member may also be eligible for BC Hydro’s Customer Crisis Fund, which provides access to grants of up to $600 to pay their bills.

Buy BC: New Buy BC Partnership Program E-commerce Funding Stream here

  • The Government of BC has committed $300,000 to Buy BC E-commerce activities to support the immediate needs of the sector as a result of COVID-19.
  • Up to $5,000 per applicant
  • The application window will open May 15 at 9am PDT
  • First-come, first-serve basis until funding has been fully allocated

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation: Response to Coronavirus here

  • CECRA for Small Businesses here
  • Dealing with Mortgage Payment Difficulties here
  • Understanding Mortgage Payment Deferral here
  • CMHC Expands Insured Mortgage Purchase Program here

Canadian Bankers Association: Canada’s Six Biggest Banks Take Decisive Action to Help Customers Impacted by COVID-19 here

Coastal Communities Social Procurement Initiative: supporting local government and First Nations social procurement through education, training and coaching here

Employment Insurance: Service Canada is ready to support Canadians affected by COVID-19 and placed in quarantine here

  • Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB): taxable benefit of $2,000 a month for up to 4 months
  • Benefits for the Self-Employed: If you operate your own business, or if you work for a corporation but cannot access EI benefits because you control more than 40% of the corporation’s voting shares.
  • Work-Sharing Program: temporary special measures for employers affected by the downturn in business due to COVID-19 here.
  • EI Sickness Benefits: provide up to 15 weeks of income replacement. Canadians quarantined can apply for EI sickness benefits
  • Emergency Care Benefit: providing up to $900 bi-weekly, for up to 15 weeks.  Application will be available in April 2020.
  • Record of Employment: instructions for employers
    • If your employees are directly affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) and they are no longer working, you must issue a Record of Employment (ROE).
    • When the employee is sick or quarantined, use code D (illness or injury) as the reason for separation (block 16). Do not add comments.
    • When the employee is no longer working due to a shortage of work because the business has closed or decreased operations due to coronavirus (COVID-19), use code A (Shortage of work). Do not add comments.
    • When the employee refuses to come to work but is not sick or quarantined, use code E (Quit) or code N (Leave of absence), as appropriate. Avoid adding comments unless absolutely necessary.

Export Development Canada: Information for Canadian exporters impacted by COVID-19 here.

  • New domestic mandate enhances EDC’s role in supporting all Canadian businesses through COVID-19 crisis here
  • Business Credit Availability Program here

Facebook: offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for eligible small businesses across the countries where they operate.  Small Business Grants Program information here

Farm Credit Canada: FCC’s response to COVID-19, including additional lending capacity here

FortisBC: Supporting BC during the COVID-19 outbreak here. COVID-19 may have financial impacts to FortisBC customers. They encourage customers to reach out and let them know if you are having difficulty with your bill so they can help find a solution.


  • Ad credits for Google Ads small and medium-sized businesses here
  • COVID-19: $800+ million to support small businesses and crisis response here

Granted Consulting: Use this COVID-19 Business Assessment Tool to help determine what resources and funding is available here

Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada: ITAC Launches Stimulus Fund in Response to COVID-19 here

Innovative Solutions Canada: dedicated funding to help combat current and future outbreaks of COVID-19 here

Island Coastal Economic Trust: In collaboration with Tourism Vancouver Island and Innovation Island Technology Association have lunched 2 new programs to help foster business adaptation and recovery during and post COVID-19 here

Microsoft Teams: Rogers and Microsoft are offering a 6 month free trial of Microsoft Teams here

Work Safe BC: defers Q1 2020 payment here 

United Way: COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund here


Call to Action


Supply products and services to support BC’s COVID-19 response here

Canadian manufacturers needed to help combat COVID-19 here

Help Canada Combat COVID-19 here

Foreign Trade Zone – Vancouver Island (FTZVI): If you are a Canadian manufacturer or business that can assist Canada in meeting the need for medical supplies, your help is needed. If you can say yes to the following, they want to hear from you by sending a short summary of your offer to

  • You manufacture in Canada and/or have ready access to necessary inputs through your supply chain.
  • You have equipment or facilities that can be rapidly re-tooled to meet medical needs, including for personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, masks and surgical gowns; sanitizers; wipes; ventilators; and other medical equipment and supplies.
  • You have skilled workers who are able to respond and who could be available for work in the current circumstances.


Prevention, Planning & Advice


COVID-19 Provincial Support and Information here

Resources for Canadian businesses here

Plan Templates & Guides

Pandemic Preparedness for Business here

Emergency Preparedness BC: Find the below plans and more here

Pandemic Planning e-Course (Free): Understand a pandemic and what you need to do to prevent one. Offered by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety here

Printable Posters

Checklists and Recommendations

  • How Workplaces can Prepare and Protect here
  • Is Your Business Digitally Ready? here
  • Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety tip sheets here
  • COVID-19, Energy and Canada’s Economic Choices Going Forward here
  • Is COVID-19 Forcing Your Digital Transformation? 12 Stepts to Move Faster here
  • COVID-19 and Teleworking: Adapting Your Business Practices here
  • Engaging Your Workforce in a Crisis Context here
  • Business Preparedness Checklist COVID-19 here
  • 5 tips for extending cash flow amid times of uncertainty here
  • Working from home: Securing your new workplace here
  • COVID-19: Managing and Pivoting During a Time of Crisis here
  • Tech Soup Canada: Tips on Working Remotely here
  • Small Business: Financial checklist before you call your banker here

PwC’s COVID-19 Navigator: Digital Assessment Tool to help you understand the potential impact to your business and gauge your readiness to respond here

Videos or Recordings of Recent Webinars

Canadian Business Resilience Network videos here

The Conference Board of Canada recordings and videos here

BDC’s Entrepreneur’s Learning Centre here

Golden Shovel’s 2020 Exceptional Economic Development Webinars here


Sector Specific Resources

Guidance on Essential Services and Functions in Canada During the COVID-19 Pandemic here



For our new Agrifood Resources during COVID-19 list of resources click here.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada: Industry questions and answers, as well as related links here

  • Surplus Food Rescue Program here

BC Agri-Business Planning Program here

Intake for greenhouse carbon tax relief grants open here

Small Scale Food Processor Association: Ag-Food Entrepreneur & Supervisor Training Program here

Work Safe BC: Agriculture and COVID-19 Safety here


BC Construction Safety Alliance here

  • Employer COVID-19 Site Inspection form here
  • What if Physical Distancing is Not Possible? here
  • Managing a Pandemic on Site here
  • COVID-19 Prevention Procedures While Working on a Construction Site here

Building Supply Industry Association of BC (BSIA): COVID-19 response here

Province of BC: Guidance to BC construction sites during COVID-19 here

Vancouver Island Construction Association here

  • Online courses available for Business & Leadership and Safety here

Work Safe BC: Construction and COVID-19 Safety here

Food Services

BC Ministry of Health: COVID-19 Guidance to Retail Food and Grocery Stores (April 25) here

BC Restaurant & Foodservices Association: resources here

  • Join the Restoring Confidence App program and get a custom local business poster, learn more, or join here
  • Stand Up For Service Campaign – Press Release here, Nomination Form here
  • Blueprint for Reopening here
  • BC Restaurant and Foodservices Industry Working to Develop Strategy for Reopening here
  • List of BC restaurants who are offering takeout and delivery services here
  • OneTable asking restaurants to share their story and make their voice heard here
  • Restaurant Sector COVID-19 Impact Survey here
  • Printable signage for restaurant owners and operators here

Restaurants Canada: Resources for foodservice operators here

Small Business BC: resources for the food & beverage industry here


BC Forest Safety: COVID-19 resources here

Logging Tax: updates and info here

Work Safe BC: Forestry field work and COVID-19 safety here

Industrial Camps

BC Ministry of Health: Protecting Workers at Large Industrial Camps During the COVID-19 Pandemic (April 28) here

Province of BC: Interim Communicable Disease Control Guidelines for Industrial Camps here


Canadian manufacturers needed to help combat COVID-19 here

Province of BC: Guidance to BC manufacturers during COVID-19

Work Safe BC: Industry information for manufacturing here

Mining and Smelting

Province of BC: Guidance to mining and smelting operations during COVID-19 here


BC Centre for Disease Control: Guidance for non-food retail (malls, shops and stores) here

Canada Post: COVID-19 latest updates & FAQs here

Comox Valley Businesses Services during COVID-19 here

London Drugs:

  • Attention local small business owners: London Drugs want to help you sell your products, announcement here
  • Register here

Retail Council of Canada: Coronavirus resources for retailers here

  • Recovery Playbook here
  • Retail Council of Canada Launches Framework for Retailers to Reopen Stores here
  • Q&As for Retailers on COVID-19 here
  • RCC applauds today’s update on the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (April 15) here
  • 2020 province Workers’ Compensation updates for retailers (April 13) here
  • BC announces additional COVID-19 measures (March 26) here

Retail Insider: Articles and releases here

Work Safe BC: Retail and COVID-19 Safety here

Tourism Industry

Canada’s Regional Development Agencies (RDAs): Info sheet here

Canadian Association of Fairs and Exhibitions (CAFE): Resources here

  • Scenario Mapping During a Crisis here
  • Working with Sponsors During Difficult Times here

Canadian Heritage: Emergency Support Fund for Heritage Organizations here

Destination BC: Emergency Preparedness for BC’s Tourism Industry here, Virtual Experiences Best Practices Guide here and specific info about the Coronavirus here

  • Messaging Guidance for BC’s Tourism Industry here
  • BC’s Tourism Sectors to Benefit from $400,000 in Funding from Destination BC here
  • COVID-19 Impact and Recovery Report: Business Events here
  • Messaging Guidance for BC’s Tourism Industry here

Destination Canada: COVID-19 Updates here

Discover Comox Valley: COVID-19 information and updates for residents and visitors here

Hotel Association of Canada: Information for Hoteliers here

Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada: Indigenous Businesses Receive $306.8 Million Federal Stimulus Funding Package in Response to COVID-19  here

Tourism Industry Association of Canada: Updates and resources here

  • State of Tourism in Canada During COVID-19 (April 13) here

Vancouver Island Coastal Tourism Resiliency Program: information here

  • Register for the program here
  • Webinar Archive with recordings here

Western Economic Diversification Canada: Support for tourism operators and SMEs here


Local Government Resources

City of Courtenay

Town of Comox

Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD)

Province of BC

Provincial news releases here. List of COVID-19 Essential Services here


Government of Canada

Resources for Canadian Businesses



Local Services


BC Ferries: Travel advisories here

  • BC Ferries to screen passengers for COVID-19 as new regulations announced here
  • Keeping Vital Goods and Services Moving here

BC Transit: Coronavirus Information here

  • BC Transit and the Comox Valley Regional District implement services changes here

Comox Valley Airport: COVID-19 Updates here

  • April 30th update here

Harbour Air Seaplanes: COVID-19 service updates here

Pacific Coastal Airlines: President’s message here


Personal Health Resources

The Public Health Agency of Canada is actively monitoring the current outbreak of COVID-19 (coronavirus) and working with the World Health Organization and other international partners.


BC 211

A program that matches seniors who need support with non-medical essentials, to volunteers in their community who are willing to help. To register for services, or to offer help, register here. More information available here

BC Centre for Disease Control

Information about COVID-19, how to protect yourself, your family and your community and what to do if you suspect you have the virus here

Lush Valley Food Action Society

Emergency Food Share Program is aimed at providing food to those in need in the Comox Valley, including those in need of financial and/or food delivery assistance.

Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC)

Public health risk is being continually reassessed as new information becomes available. For up-to-date and reliable information about the coronavirus and Canada’s response to this issue, visit PHAC’s online resources here.

Prevention and Planning

You can find preventative information here on the PHAC’s website and call the Health Canada 2019 coronavirus information line at 1-833-784-4397 with further questions.

Thrive Health

BC COVID-19 Self Assessment Tool and new support app here. The app will let you receive the latest updates, trusted resources, and alerts.  The Self-Assessment Tool is built in.

World Health

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) have issued a joint statement on international cooperation as key to the containment of COVID-19. Read it here.




Bank of Montreal (BMO): COVID-19 support page, including updates here

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC): Financial assistance form, services, and updates here

Coastal Community Credit Union: Service updates, financial relief plan, FAQs here

Coast Capital Savings: member financial relief program, branch closures, and updates here

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC): Updates, financial relief program, and FAQs here

Scotiabank: Latest updates including message from CEO, financial relief, and COVID-19 FAQs here

TD Canada Trust: How they can help, mortgage payment deferral online application, and other information here