COVID-19: Cross country update (July 9, 2020)

July 9, 2020


The Government of Canada announced the following measures:

Increase to Length of Employment Insurance Emergency Response Benefit

Employees may be eligible for the Employment Insurance Emergency Response Benefit if they stop working for reasons related to COVID-19.  Interim Order No. 5 Amending the Employment Insurance Act (Employment Insurance Emergency Response Benefit):  SOR/2020-141 increases the maximum number of weeks for which the Employment Insurance Emergency Response Benefit may be paid to a claimant from 16 to 24.

Fish Farmers in Quebec to Receive Emergency Aid

COVID-19 has created a sharp decline in the volume of fish purchased from fish farmers. In order to help minimize the financial burden on farmers and the fish mortality rates, the Federal Government will be contributing $612,000 and the Quebec Government will be contributing $408,000 to relief efforts.

Investment in Franco-Ontario Businesses

The Federal Government will be making a $4.5 million Regional Relief and Recovery Fund investment to support the recovery of businesses and organizations in Franco-Ontarian communities throughout southern Ontario.  This investment will help small and medium sized enterprises rebuild their revenues and support new re-opening expenditures, such as acquiring personal protective equipment and re-tooling physical storefronts to adopt social distancing measures.  It is expected that this investment will help support over 460 Franco-Ontario organizations.  For more information, including where to apply, see this news release.



The Government of Saskatchewan announced the following measures:

Guidelines for More Phase 4 Re-Openings

Today, the Saskatchewan Government provided an update with respect to the second part of Phase 4, Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan, including guidelines for:

  • temporary food vendors;
  • racing and rodeos;
  • banquet and conference facilities; and
  • car shows and trade shows.

Guidelines are also currently under development for door-to-door solicitation, garage sales and the donation of used items. Additionally, seating areas are now permitted at drive-in theatres, and public and farmers’ markets. Further, effective July 16, live performances will be permitted in restaurants and licensed establishments and at public and farmers’ markets.

For more information on the new guidelines, as well as information regarding safe summer camping at provincial parks, visit this news release.

State of Emergency Renewed

The Government of Saskatchewan issued OC 324/2020, which, effective July 8, 2020, renews the declaration of a State of Emergency throughout Saskatchewan to address the COVID-19 public health emergency.



The Government of Ontario announced the following measures:

Extension of Emergency Orders

The Government of Ontario announced today that it has extended all emergency orders currently in force that were made under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act to July 22, 2020. The government intends to extend emergency orders to align with the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020, if passed.  The emergency orders can be found on the Ontario Government’s website.

 Farmers Receive Enhanced Insurance Protection

The Governments of Ontario and Canada are enhancing AgriInsurance coverage for the 2020 growing season to include labour shortages due to COVID-19.  The enhanced coverage will include:

  • Inability to attract sufficient on-farm labour due to COVID-19; and
  • Illness or quarantine of on-farm labour and the producer due to COVID-19.

Farmers experiencing COVID-19 related labour disruptions should notify Agricorp as soon as possible.



The Government of Quebec announced the following measures:

New Measures for Bars

On July 9, the Quebec government announced new measures to enforce health regulations in bars. As of July 10, bars will have to stop selling alcoholic beverages at midnight instead of 3 a.m. and people in the bar must leave by 1 a.m. at the latest. In addition, bars will be required to limit their capacity to 50% of the capacity indicated on their liquor license, to respect the prohibition of dancing and to respect the requirement for clients to be seated when consuming alcohol. Finally, bars will have to set up a register to record the contact information of their clients.

State of Emergency Renewal

On July 8, the Québec government adopted an Order to renew the state of public health emergency throughout the Quebec territory and extend the measures provided for by Orders in Council until July 15, 2020.


Le gouvernement du Québec a annoncé les mesures suivantes :

Nouvelles mesures pour les bars

Le 9 juillet, le gouvernement du Québec a annoncé de nouvelles mesures visant à faire respecter les consignes sanitaires dans les bars. À compter du 10 juillet, les bars devront arrêter de vendre des boissons alcooliques à minuit, au lieu de 3h du matin et les personnes se trouvant dans le bar devront avoir quitté au plus tard à 1h du matin. De plus, les bars devront restreindre leur capacité d’accueil à 50 % de celle inscrite sur leur permis d’alcool, respecter l’interdiction des activités de danse et respecter l’obligation pour les clients d’être assis pour consommer de l’alcool. Finalement, les bars devront mettre en place un registre afin de consigner les coordonnées de leurs clients.

Renouvellement de l’état d’urgence

Le 8 juillet, le gouvernement du Québec a adopté un décret pour renouveler l’état d’urgence sanitaire sur tout le territoire québécois et prolongé les mesures prises par arrêtés ministériels jusqu’au 15 juillet 2020.


Newfoundland and Labrador

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador announced the following measures:

Bar Establishments

Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Janice Fitzgerald, issued an order pursuant to the Public Health Protection and Promotion Act, that allows businesses that hold a license under the Liquor Control Act, whose primary purpose is the consumption of beer, wine, or spirits, to open and operate at 50% of their approved capacity, if physical distancing can be maintained.  The order also prohibits dance floors.


New Brunswick

The Government of New Brunswick announced the following measures:

Pre-Travel Registration Service

Travellers who wish to enter New Brunswick now have access to a pre-travel registration service to help speed up their trip.  The Travel Registration Program website allows those who intend to travel to pre-register, verify that they meet the health screening criteria and see what documents are required to enter the province. Travellers who pre-register will be given a registration document and information about current health guidelines.  Everyone entering New Brunswick by land, air or sea must register, including residents of New Brunswick and the other Atlantic provinces.


Northwest Territories

The Government of the Northwest Territories announced the following measures:

Lessons Learned from School Closures

Education leaders are applying lessons learned from school closures to help make comprehensive plans for the 2020-21 school year, with the aim of keeping students in school as much as possible.  If a second wave of COVID-19 occurs, decisions about school closures will not be made out of fear, but based on the most up-to-date public health research and recommendations.

A key reason for continuing in-person education wherever possible is the technological challenge of providing full-time distance learning.  There are gaps in telecommunications infrastructure, capacity and equipment in communities and homes, which make it unsustainable to rely on these technologies full-time.

Although education leaders recognize that the unpredictable circumstances of the pandemic could result in some temporary school closures, the goal is to place a priority focus on continuing full-time, in-person learning, especially for those in Junior Kindergarten up to Grade 9.



The Government of Nunavut announced the following measures:

Public Health Emergency Extended

Nunavut’s Minister of Health, George Hickes, has extended the territory’s public health emergency until July 23, 2020.  All existing measures under the public health emergency order remain in effect.


Miller Thomson is closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation to ensure that we provide our clients with appropriate support in this rapidly changing environment. For articles, information updates and firm developments, please visit our COVID-19 Resources page.


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