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Local Businesses: Did you have revenue losses in 2019 due to the forestry labour action? PMCC is wor

Port McNeill, B.C. August 18, 2020 MP Hounorable Rachel Blaney and constituency assistant Kristy Bell have stepped to the plate in a willingness to help 2019 forestry strike impacted businesses keep their CEWS eligability - and we have a plan for moving forward in helping business. Whether you are a Port McNeill Chamber Member, in Port Hardy, or anywhere else, if you were impacted and had strike related losses please contact us. If you're from Nanaimo, Campbell River, Parksville, Port Alberni or other island communities, your Chambers are on board with this action too - contact them or us for more information.


Contact the Port McNeill Chamber to be represented in a regulatory change or exemption from the eligibility parameters for the CEWS program - many of our local and island businesses are in EXACTLY the same position. Collectively, we can take care of this more efficiently than on a case-by-case basis. Contact with your business name, a contact person, phone, and email.


Wondering if this applies to your business? Read on:


In order for businesses to qualify for the Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program, a business needs to prove:

A revenue decrease of 15% or more for March 2020, and 30% or more for April 2020 to December 2020.

An employer may demonstrate the drop in qualifying revenue by comparing revenue in an eligible period to one of the following reference periods:

  • A year-over-year comparator (i.e. comparing March 2020 to March 2019, April 2020 to April 2019, and May 2020 to May 2019); or

  • An average of revenue earned in January and February 2020.

  • For more information on CEWS please see:


Surveys of businesses directly and collaterally impacted by the July 1st 2019 to February 15th 2020 labour action between Western Forest Products and United Steelworkers Union 1-1937 indicate losses in revenue in the magnitude of 50% or more compared year-over-year to 2018/2017/2016. These businesses include but are not limed to: forestry businesses, accommodation providers, trade service providers, business service, parts suppliers, retailers, childcare providers, and fuel suppliers. (FIR, 2019) (PMCC, 2020)

COVID-19 has caused further losses to strike impacted businesses, yet due to the year-over-year comparator parameters listed above for eligibility, the most vulnerable coastal businesses have now entered a comparative financial period where CEWS support is no longer available - because COVID-19 losses cannot be proven against the already staggering losses. It is a one-two punch for rural coastal economy, and an example where due to policy, a program cannot support those who need it most.


Port McNeill Chamber of Commerce

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