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Small businesses tap $5-billion in loans, but some owners say they don’t qualify due to payroll rules

Canada’s largest banks approved more than $5-billion in no-interest loans to small businesses in the first five days of an emergency government program, but many small-business owners say they won’t qualify because of restrictions around payroll criteria. Story

Self-employed workers, sole proprietors worry they are shut out of COVID-19 relief

Sole proprietors and other self-employed entrepreneurs are joining the growing list of Canadians who feel left behind by Ottawa’s COVID-19 relief programs, worried that taking on even the smallest sale or project will prevent them from accessing benefits. Story

Businesses urge steady, cautious approach to restarting Canadian economy

The organization representing Canada’s largest corporations is urging the country’s first ministers to take a co-ordinated and cautious approach to reopening the economy and lifting stay-at-home orders to combat the coronavirus. Story

Federal emergency benefit to be extended to part-time and seasonal workers

The federal government is expanding emergency aid payments to workers earning $1,000 or less a month and will work with the provinces to top up the wages of Canadians on the front lines of combatting COVID-19, such as those in working in long-term care facilities. Story

Pitching In: Donated iPads allow coronavirus hospital patients to connect with family

Shortly after Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre drastically restricted visitors to control the spread of the novel coronavirus, its leadership began brainstorming how they could keep patients connected with families. Story

Crunch time on the vegetable farm: For foreign workers and owners, coronavirus accelerates a race against the seasons

In the southern Mexican state of Chiapas, Victor Hugo Martinez Hipolito tends to his vegetable garden, growing his own produce under the scorching sun so his wife and two young daughters always have something fresh to eat. He never goes into town to buy groceries – a relative makes the trip instead. Story

Canada’s Indigenous tourism operators call for more accessible federal assistance amid COVID-19 pandemic

Moccasin Trails’ Business Achievement Award must seem like ancient history to co-owners Greg Hopf and Frank Antoine. Part of the fastest-growing segment of the Canadian travel industry, the two-year-old small business was earning more than $15,000 a month when it won the All Nations Trust Co.’s 2019 Tourism Award for its guided canoe trips through British Columbia’s Secwepemc Nation. Story