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COVID-19  UPDATE
FOR FOOD AND BEVERAGE MANUFACTURERS
MEMBER UPDATE #4

Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)

Announced March 25, 2020, the CERB is a simpler and more accessible combination of the previously announced Emergency Care Benefit and Emergency Support Benefit. It is more universal and is an improvement to the EI system and the older emergency relief programs.  

This taxable benefit provides $2,000 a month for up to four months for workers who lose their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Additionally, workers who are still employed, but are not receiving income because of disruptions to their work situation due to COVID-19, would also qualify for the CERB.

This benefit will not be available until April and will take at least 10 days to pay out benefits. 

Find Out More about CERB




Thompson, Dorfman, Sweatman LLP are Here to Help! 

TDS (a long-standing Food & Beverage Manitoba member) is committed to ensuring your needs are met. In that regard, we expect you have pressing needs as you wade through these challenging times. TDS is ready to help Food and Beverage Manitoba members with any legal needs. The team at Thompson, Dorfman, Sweatman has noticed that there are several similar issues that are arising in businesses and workplaces.
 
For example:

  • Is this crisis a “force majeure” event, and is it possible to cancel or terminate contracts during this crisis?   
  • Can we get a discount on the rent we are paying to our landlord?  
  • What are our rights and obligations as a landlord?  
  • Can we require an employee to advise if he or she has been diagnosed with COVID-19, or in close contact with someone who has?  
  • What options do we have in our by-laws or under the law to hold shareholder meetings, other than in person?  
  • We are reducing hours or temporarily closing – what type of notification do we have to give to our funders, shareholders and other stakeholders in our business?  
  • What is the impact on my business of a declaration by the provincial or federal government of a state of emergency? 
  • We are reducing hours or temporarily closing – what are the requirements and obligations with respect to our employees and independent contractors?   
  • Are my employees and independent contractors eligible for Employment Insurance benefits during this time?  
  • Does our “business interruption” provision apply in our policy of insurance?  
  • What are the changes made by CRA in the tax filing deadlines?  
To assist businesses during these difficult times, TDS has launched a  COVID-19 Resource Centre,  https://www.tdslaw.com/covid-19-legal-updates/ which includes complimentary articles and alerts related to the pandemic, as well as a list of trusted and reputable links.  

TDS has also partnered with Lex Mundi.  This site is helpful for members doing business outside of Canada (importing or exporting, etc.) as 100 law firms from around the world contribute to this page.
https://www.lexmundi.com/lexmundi/Global_COVID-19_Resources.asp
 
If TDS can assist you with any of the above or deal with any other issues you are dealing with, they are ready to assist. Please contact: Mark HoweDirector of Client Relations at mhowe@tdslaw.com

 


Help Manitoba Combat Coronavirus Disease

The provincial medical supply chain is currently facing challenges and the Manitoba government is proactively asking local vendors to consider producing or contributing supplies and services. This initiative to provide context and clarity to Manitoba businesses and manufacturers to remove barriers allowing strategic business decisions to redeploy capacity towards the production of essential equipment. 

Products of need in Manitoba include:

  • N95 respirators,
  • surgical/procedure masks,
  • nitrile gloves,
  • vinyl gloves,
  • nasopharyngeal swabs,
  • specific types of reagent to be used in labs,
  • gowns,
  • hand sanitizer,
  • cleaning supplies, and
  • disinfecting supplies.

To learn more on how you can help, the province has introduced an online portal (link: https://forms.gov.mb.ca/GoMCovid19/ )
 
In addition, the province created a new web application www.HelpNextDoorMB.ca to help those in need of assistance and build a network of helpers coming together as a community.


POSTPONED but not forgotten

In light of recent developments in the spread of COVID-19 and direction from Manitoba public health officials, Food & Beverage Manitoba believes it is incumbent upon us to carefully assess all risks and to do our part to flatten the curve and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

As a result, we have postponed the following events:

  • April 17th - BRC Risk Assessment
  • April 28th - ​HACCP Implementation
  • April 30th - Traceability Workshop
  • May 13th - Industry Day & AGM
We will continue to monitor this situation very closely and re-evaluate future event plans based on prevailing conditions and expert advice. For those registered for postponed events, we are working to secure alternate dates and venues for the events. We will notify all members as this information becomes available via website and eblasts.

Please continue to monitor our website for the latest information.

 
To help slow the rate of COVID-19 infection, Food & Beverage Manitoba’s office
will be closed to the public until further notice. 
All Food & Beverage Manitoba staff will continue to be available from
8:30am – 4:30pm (Monday – Friday) by email
or by calling 204-982-6372.  
 
Food & Beverage Manitoba has compiled a COVID-19 Resource Page to
assist through these difficult times. Watch for the latest updates and resources at

foodbeveragemb.ca/resources
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