While more salons are beginning to reopen across Canada, the financial burden associated with the COVID-19 pandemic will not suddenly disappear.
Trudeau announced earlier this month that the federal government will be extending the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy program until August 29 in order to prevent additional layoffs. Additionally, they will also be revisiting their 30 per cent revenue decline threshold for eligibility in order to encourage more businesses to apply.
“As businesses start up again, needing a decline shouldn’t become a barrier to growth,” said Trudeau. “You have some runway to catch your breath as you get restarted, so please, bring back your workers.”
The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) is eligible to businesses of all sizes who have suffered from a revenue decrease of 30 per cent or more due to the pandemic. It covers 75 per cent of the business’ payroll—a maximum of $847 per employee, per week.
The program was originally set to expire in June. Now with the extension until August, businesses still have a chance to receive the subsidy or apply for it.
According to Trudeau, the purpose of this program is to keep as many Canadians employed as possible, rather than having a majority of the population rely on the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), which offers $2,000 per month.
Based on our own survey, many salon owners and hairstylists have applied and received the CERB funding, but very few were able to benefit from the CEWS since many salons were forced to completely shut down due to the pandemic.
As more salons prepare to reopen, the CEWS may provide some much-needed financial assistance to owners, especially since some salons have been now closed for more than two months. Applying for the CEWS may allow salons to keep all or most of their staff, as they slowly get back on their feet.