Ontario Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs - Impact of COVID-19
On August 24, 2020, OFVGA Vice Chair Charles Stevens made a presentation to Ontario’s Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs, which has been working to understand the impacts of COVID-19 on small and medium-sized businesses in the province. Although provincial and federal government support of the fruit and vegetable sector has been helpful, the economic toll of the pandemic on farmers has been considerable and is ongoing.
Through the presentation, OFVGA asked the provincial government to:
- Continue to work with the sector to push the federal government for meaningful improvements to federal business risk management programs, particularly AgriStability
- Look at options for a quarantine support program for fruit and vegetable growers whose labour challenges are not covered
- Continue supporting workable seasonal agricultural and temporary foreign worker programs, both of which are essential to edible horticulture and domestic food security
- Improve proactive coordination between local public health units and the province
A written submission of the OFVGA's input can be found here.