LAST UPDATED: Tuesday July 7th, 2020
Current Press Updates From Your Government:
For the latest, up to date press releases from:
Prime Minister of Canada, please click here.
Ontario Government, please click here
City of Toronto, please click here.

This Page: Below is a collection of information and resources business owners/managers/staff members should find helpful.

Please note, as this page continues to grow, new items will be added at the top of the list.

Some Topics Include:

  • New: Mask Bylaw: poster & other important information for businesses
  • New: How to Wear A Cloth Mask, City of Toronto
  • Update: Re-opening Guidance From City of Toronto
  • Update: Rent relief for small businesses (CECRA) Extended
  • New: Who can open in Phase 2?
  • Update: City of Toronto Guidelines for Re-Opening your Restaurant
  • CafeTO Patio Application Now Live
  • Suppliers of Needed Goods & Services, (PPE) City of Toronto
  • Weekly Webinars for Toronto Businesses
  • Ontario: Resources to prevent COVID-19 in the workplace (by sector)
  • ShopHERE: ShopHERE giving Toronto’s independent businesses and artists the opportunity to develop an online store.
  • Social Distancing Signage for businesses
  • Staff Screening Sheet
  • What is Digital Main Street and how can its services help my business?
  • and much more…

NEW Mask Bylaw: poster & other important information for businesses

Masks to be worn indoors.
Wearing a mask or face covering is required in indoor public spaces in the City of Toronto as of July 7, 2020.  With some exceptions, all customers or visitors entering an indoor public premise are required to wear a mask or face covering while inside.

Please ensure that…

  • Masks and face coverings cover your nose, mouth and chin, without gapping.
  • Wash your hands before and after putting on your mask, and again after removal, (to reduce cross contamination.)
  • Store your mask in a clean paper bag, (to stop cross contamination.)
  • Wash your mask (and hands) regularly.

As a business you must:

  1. Create a mask policy for your establishment. Click here and see page 3 for a sample.
  2. Communicate this new policy to staff and customers.
  3. Train your staff on the policy and who is exempt.
  4. Post signs at all entrances reminding everyone to wear a mask and must include the language used in the bylaw. Click here to download a pre-made sign with the mandatory wording.

Please note: All staff, customers or visitors must wear a mask indoors, with some exceptions (e.g. children under the age of two and people with certain health conditions, employees in designated areas or protected by a physical barrier). Proof is not required if someone has an exemption.

To learn more details please visit the City of Toronto’s webpage, COVID 19: Mandatory Mask or Face Covering Bylaw and watch this on demand webinar by clicking here.

New: How to Wear A Cloth Mask, City of Toronto

Please refer to the sign above to learn how to wear a mask properly. To download and print, please click here.

Update: Re-opening Guidance From City of Toronto

The City of Toronto is preparing to oversee the safe restart of some services and partial reopening of many businesses. Resources have been developed to help support business through this time. For guidance on safely reopening, business operators can reference the Toronto Public Health Planning Guide, and visit the COVID-19: Reopening Guidelines for Businesses & Organizations to view sector specific resources.

Decisions about when and how businesses can begin operating will be made by the Government of Ontario in accordance with its framework to reopen the province after COVID-19.

Updated: Rent relief for small businesses (CECRA) Extended
CECRA has been extended until the end of July 2020. Click here to learn more and to find out if you qualify.

On Friday April 24th, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced rent relief for small businesses  that can’t afford to pay their landlords at a time when their operations are shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses will provide forgivable loans to qualifying commercial property owners to cover 50 per cent of three monthly rent payments payable by eligible small business tenants experiencing financial hardship during April, May and June. The loans will be forgiven if the mortgaged property owner agrees to reduce the eligible small business tenants’ rent by at least 75 per cent for the three corresponding months under a rent forgiveness agreement, which will include a pledge not to evict the tenant while the agreement is in place. To continue reading click here to jump to our source.

Note: While the above and below linked sources state that this would be available to landlords with mortgages, we are told the federal government has confirmed that this will be available to all landlords, regardless of whether or not they currently have a mortgage. We await official public confirmation.

More details: Official news release can be found by clicking here.

Please click here for the Additional Support for Canadian Businesses from the Economic Impact of COVID-19 webpage.

NEW Who can open in Phase 2?

On Monday June 22nd, 2020, the Ontario Government announced it would be moving Toronto and Peel Region to Phase 2, starting Wednesday June 24th, 2020

To find a list of business types that may reopen please click here. (This includes restaurant patios where there are existing patios, only. This does not at this time include CafeTO.)

To reopen safely, employers must review the workplace health and safety guidance and ensure that appropriate measures are in place. Employers must also meet all existing occupational health and safety requirements.

UPDATED City of Toronto Guidelines for Re-Opening your Restaurant

The city of Toronto has issued a set of guidelines for how to re-open your restaurant (and patio.)

One example is, “Assist TPH in tracing contacts of COVID-19 cases. Ensure that you obtain a first name and telephone number (or e-mail address) from one person in each party (this may be provided when making a reservation), and keep this, together with a record of the table number and the date and time for at least 30 days. This information may be requested by TPH to assist with tracing contacts of someone who ate at your restaurant and subsequently developed COVID-19.You may also be required to post a notice of data collection.”

Please read the full guide by clicking here.

If you have a specific question about anything in this document, please call Toronto Public Health (TPH) at 416-338-7600, email or visit

NEW CafeTO Patio Application Now Live

If you plan to apply for a CafeTO patio this summer,  please go ahead and complete the application by visiting the link below, (but first read the CafeTO Guide Book in full) and if possible submit no later than 12 noon Tuesday June 23rd.  (Please also let us know that you plan to apply by emailing  with your name and best phone number to reach you at as the city plans to meet with the BIA to review site plans.)

You are STRONGLY advised to read through everything carefully before you start, and ensure you have everything it states you need.

Special note: When it comes to insurance, the City of Toronto WILL NOT accept your application if you just send them your current certificate. There is an insurance form you need to download and have your insurance provider complete.

Once the city has received ALL applications in our area, the City will set up a meeting with the BIA to review site plans. With this in mind, please do not wait to start this process, or you may be holding the process up for our entire BIA.

We look forward to seeing many patios popping up this summer through the CafeTO program.

Here is the link:

NEW Suppliers of Needed Goods & Services, (PPE) City of Toronto

The City of Toronto has a webpage where you can find a list of suppliers of PPE and other needed goods & services, or apply to a be supplier. Please click here to visit the page to learn more and to download the most up to date list.

Ontario Permits More Businesses and Services to Reopen in the Coming Days Through Stage 2 Re-Opening

Update: Toronto moving to Phase 2 Wednesday June 24, see above.

The government of Ontario is easing restrictions in some communities and businesses and moving them to Stage 2 of re-opening, where it is safe to do so. Please note, Toronto is not included at this time. See full press release for more information. (Press release highlights below.)

When Can Toronto Enter Stage?
At the beginning of each week (Monday), the government of Ontario will provide an update on the ongoing assessment of regions, and whether they are ready to move into Stage 2 at the end of the week.

Who Can Open When We Move To Stage 2?
Business and service types permitted to reopen with proper health and safety measures in place, only in regions entering Stage 2 include:

  • Outdoor dine-in services at restaurants, bars and other establishments, including patios, curbside, parking lots and adjacent properties;
  • Select personal and personal care services with the proper health and safety measures in place, including tattoo parlours, barber shops, hair salons and beauty salons;
  • Shopping malls under existing restrictions, including food services reopening for take-out and outdoor dining only;
  • Tour and guide services, such as bike and walking, bus and boat tours, as well as tasting and tours for wineries, breweries and distilleries;
  • Water recreational facilities such as outdoor splash pads and wading pools, and all swimming pools;
  • Beach access and additional camping at Ontario Parks;
  • Camping at private campgrounds;
  • Outdoor-only recreational facilities and training for outdoor team sports, with limits to enable physical distancing;
  • Drive-in and drive-through venues for theatres, concerts, animal attractions and cultural appreciation, such as art installations;
  • Film and television production activities, with limits to enable physical distancing; and
  • Weddings and funerals, with limits on social gatherings to 10 people.

How Do We Open When Toronto Enters Stage 2?
The government, in partnership with health and safety associations, has released more than 100 health and safety guidance documents at to help employers in multiple sectors ― including retail, restaurant and food services and child care ― keep spaces safe for workers and customers. As they prepare to reopen, employers are strongly advised to review these guidance documents and implement appropriate measures to help protect their workers and customers.

Where Can I Find PPE, (Personal Protective Equipment?)
The government has launched the Workplace PPE Supplier Directory to provide businesses with information on personal protective equipment (PPE) suppliers. The directory can be accessed here.

Additionally, as of Friday, June 12, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., the province will increase the limit on social gatherings from five to 10 people across the province, regardless of whether the region has moved to Stage 2. Also, all places of worship in Ontario will also be permitted to open with physical distancing in place and attendance limited to no more than 30 per cent of the building capacity.

Read the full press release by clicking here.

Additional Time To Pay Toronto Property Taxes

The City understands some residents and businesses may be experiencing financial hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Property owners will be able to request additional time to pay their taxes without incurring late payment penalties or interest charges for a six month period effective June 1 to November 30, 2020.
The additional time given to pay your property taxes does not reduce the amount of taxes that are owed to the City of Toronto.

Additional information can be found at the link below:

Weekly Webinars for Toronto Businesses

These repeat weekly. You can attend more than once.

1) Ask-An-Accountant – Applying for Government COVID-19 Funding Programs
2) Business AdviceTO Female Founders with SheEO
3) Business AdviceTO Retail with Retail Advantage
4) Business AdviceTO Tech with TechTO

Sign-up for future weekly Online Events & Webinars using the link below. (Scroll to the drop down labelled Online Events & Webinars once the page loads.)

Checklist & Guide of Best Reopening Practices For Restaurants

While we are currently awaiting official Provincial guidelines, The Ontario Restaurant Hotel and Motel Association (ORHMA), in partnership with stakeholders, has developed a guide with best practices for safe and successful restaurant reopening on their website.

On their website you will find:
1) Reopening Guide
2) Reopening Checklist
3) Additional Resources

Please Visit:

Ritual and City of Toronto Partner to provide FREE ordering tool for local restaurants and foodservice businesses, (if they sign up before June 1st)

The tool, called Ritual ONE, provides foodservice businesses, including restaurants, grocers, butchers, and bakeries with a way to accept digital orders from their own website and social media accounts. Ritual ONE offers businesses the option for takeout or delivery, contactless ordering, and an automated loyalty program. The startup typically offers the ordering tool at a cost…. click here to continue reading.

Jump to the Ritual One website by clicking here.

Ontario: Resources to prevent COVID-19 in the workplace (by sector)

Ontario is releasing safety guidelines to protect workers, customers and the general public from COVID-19 as it prepares for a gradual reopening of the provincial economy.

These resources are available for different sectors. They will help employers and workers better understand how to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Sector guidelines contain recommendations and tips for employers on how to keep workers safe on the job. Posters for both employers and workers also offer advice on preventative actions, including physical distancing and workplace sanitation. Employers are encouraged to download the posters to print and post in the workplace.

As new sectors of the economy begin to reopen, additional COVID-19 workplace safety resources will be added.

Click here now to continue reading and to access resources.

Extending eligibility for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (Plus Proposed Changes)

Finance Minister Bill Morneau has announced that the Government of Canada will extend the CEWS, Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, by an additional 12 weeks to August 29, 2020. Extending the program will give workers greater confidence that they will continue to get the support they need during these difficult times. For full details, including information regarding proposed legislative changes, (such as support for seasonal employees) please click here.

For further information on CEWS please click here.

Relief and Recovery Fund – (Funding to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that are unable to access the government’s existing support measures)

The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) is now accepting applications under the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF).

Regional Economy Funding Stream: This stream provides support to southern Ontario SMEs that do not qualify for, or have been declined for, current Government of Canada COVID-19 relief measures. Please visit the FedDev Ontario website for more information or to apply.

For full eligibility criteria and additional information, please visit FedDev Ontario’s RRRF page.

Requesting A Temporary Parking Pick-up Zone and/or a Curb Lane Pedestrian Zone

The City of Toronto’s CurbTO program offers businesses like grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants and community agencies the opportunity to request a temporary parking pick-up zone and/or a curb lane pedestrian zone for their business/community agency.

For tracking purposes, please email to alert the BIA of your interest in this program. Then complete your application clicking here.

ShopHERE: ShopHERE giving Toronto’s independent businesses and artists the opportunity to develop an online store.

ShopHERE provides Toronto’s independent businesses and artists the opportunity to develop an online store, which will be built and launched for free in just a matter of days. Hands-on support will be provided throughout the entire process from volunteer website developers and marketing and business students.

The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted the importance of having an online presence to sell goods and services. This is amplified that much more with the curbside pick up approach in the first stage of opening Ontario’s retail businesses.

What do businesses and artists get as part of ShopHERE? 

  •  Their choice of a template online Shopify store customized with their information, branding, logo, etc.
  • Hands-on assistance setting up and launching their online store.
  • Training and support covering digital marketing, shipping and operating their online store.
  • Access to free tools and various credits (from over 10 partners) to help support the launch of their online stores.

The ShopHERE program is open to any businesses or artist that meets the following requirements:

  • Pays commercial property taxes in the City of Toronto
  • Have fewer than 10 employees, or fewer than 25 if they are a café, restaurant, or bar
  • Not be a corporate chain or franchise
  • OR must be an artist located within the City of Toronto.

Sign Up:
To sign up for this exciting program and receive a free online store you can fill out the application form here:

If you have any questions, reach out to Digital Main Street at

Social Distancing Signage for businesses

DOWNLOAD: Line Up Signage: Click here for signage for encouraging social distancing in lines.

Front Door Signage for businesses

DOWNLOAD: Front Door Signage: Click here for signage you can use on your front door.

Staff Screening Sheet

DOWNLOAD: Click here to download a screening checklist created by Toronto Health for your employees they can complete at the start of every shift.

Who can help me with government funding applications and general business advice?

The City of Toronto has launched the BusinessTO Support Centre to provide businesses with one-on-one support with applications for government support resources/funding programs & general business advice. Learn more by clicking here.

How is Ontario planning to reopen?

The Ontario government has released A Framework for Reopening the Province, which outlines the criteria Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health and health experts will use to advise the government on the loosening of emergency measures, as well as guiding principles for the safe, gradual reopening of businesses, services and public spaces. This “is a roadmap, not a calendar.” – Premier Doug Ford.

Learn more about the outlined three stages and further details by clicking here.

Where can I learn about the emergency benefit or the wage subsidy?

For Employers: Click here to read about The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS), 75% wage
subsidy. Please note this program has been extended… For full details, including information regarding proposed legislative changes, (such as support for seasonal employees) please click here.

For Employees: Click here to read about The Canada Emergency Relief Benefit (CERB), $2k benefit
for impacted employees.

What is the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA)?

To ensure that small businesses have access to the capital they need to see them through the current challenges, the Government of Canada has launched the new Canada Emergency Business Account, which has been implemented by eligible financial institutions in cooperation with Export Development Canada (EDC).

This $25 billion program provides interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs… click here to continue reading.

NEW UPDATE: May 19, 2020, The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, announced an expansion to the eligibility criteria for the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) to include many owner-operated small businesses. This extended measure will help small businesses protect the jobs that Canadians rely on. Click here to continue reading and to learn criteria.

Is a small business owner eligible for the $2,000 temporary wage subsidy?

The following is from a Video Tax News, provided by a tax advisor and shared with us by John Kiru of TABIA (Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas).

In order to be eligible, the employer must meet three criteria:*
      1. *employ one or more individuals in Canada (“eligible employees”);*
      2. *was registered, with a business number and a payroll remittance
      account, on March 18, 2020; *
      3. *and be any of the following:*
         1. *most Canadian-controlled private corporations (CCPCs), based
         on eligibility for the small business deduction (see below);*
         2. *an individual (other than a trust);*
         3. *a partnership, all members of which are entities described in
         (i), (ii), (iii) or (v) (it is not clear why (iv) is excluded);*
         4. *a non-profit organization (exempt from income tax pursuant to
         Subsection 149(1)(l)); or*
         5. *a registered charity.*

Recap – It appears any small business person who had one or more employees, beyond themselves, and who operated their business properly/legally, and was registered, is eligible for the temporary wage subsidy.

Where can I find answers to my payroll questions?

Canadian Payroll Association FAQ: a listing of frequently asked
questions and answers from employers regarding employee payroll during
the COVID-19 pandemic.

Can my restaurant deliver alcohol?

If you have a liquor license, and do food delivery, you will most likely be permitted to deliver liquor as part of any food order. Before beginning, please carefully and thoroughly review the announcement and all requirements from the AGCO, to ensure you qualify and are in compliance. You can view the anncoument here:

What is Digital Main Street and how can its services help my business?

Digital Main Street is a program created and run by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Area’s (TABIA) that helps main street businesses achieve digital transformation. The program is built around an online learning platform, structured training programs and a digital service squad, a team of street-level team members who help main street businesses grow and manage their operations through technology.

FREE Digital Workshops & Webinars –  A range of workshops and webinars are available to you through DMS and are typically 1.5-2.5 hours in length. See a just a few titles below and visit to learn about upcoming availability.

  • Facebook and Instagram Advertising on a Small Budget
  • Website Building for Beginners Boot Camp
  • Web Presence 101: Ensuring your foundation is set
  • Social Media for Small Business
  • Email Marketing Boot Camp
  • and many more…

To learn about further offerings from Digital Main Street and how it has helped businesses, just like your’s, read the case studies at

Who can I call with questions? 

The province has launched a toll-free line called the Stop the Spread Business Information Line, 1-888-444-3659 to provide support to Ontario businesses who have questions about the province’s recent emergency order to close at-risk workplaces following recommendations by Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health. Read the full press release by clicking here.

What is the Canadian Government doing to help?

The Government of Canada has assembled a webpage of Resources for Canadian Businesses experiencing the effects of COVID-19.

The page includes, but is not limited to:
1. Support for employees
2. Support for businesses
3. Business travel and events
4. Business in international markets

Please visit

What is the City of Toronto doing to help?

The city of Toronto has assembled a page with the information small businesses may need. on one single  It also details information at the provincial and federal levels. Consider bookmarking this page:

How can I presell gift cards to raise funds?

A growing trend we have seen is people buying gift cards to local businesses, to support them as they struggle with temporarily closing due to COVID-19. The idea is the business gets the cash injection when revenues are down, and the consumer can redeem the gift card when the business is allowed to open again. Below are two options of platforms that enable this service.

1 of 2) Gift Forward

One Old Town Toronto business has used a service called GIFTforward  to do this. Click here to view their listing and visit the site’s FAQ page to learn more. This seems to be gaining traction in Toronto. If you decide to sign up for this or something else similar, please let us know.

2 of 2) Sell gift cards now, for later via The Neighbourgood

The Neighbourgood is a social good initiative that helps you sell gift cards to raise funds now. They do not take any cuts. They’ve partnered with a gift card platform that handles everything from instantly sending you payment to easy redemption. No setup fees, no monthly fees, nada. Use the link below to learn more then start selling gift cards for clients to redeem later.


Recovery Readiness. A How To Guide For Opening Your Workplace

While no official timelines or requirements have been released yet in Ontario in regards to reopening businesses, this how to guide could help your business start to plan and think about what may be required when the time comes.

As a global organization, Cushman & Wakefield has offices around the world. They have been working very closely with their operations in Asia who are ahead of other parts of the world with respect to the pandemic. To date, they have helped their clients return over 1 million people back to work.

The guide outlines “The Safe Six” workplace readiness essentials including, Preparing the Building, Preparing the Workforce, Controlling Access, Creating a Social Distancing Plan, Reducing Touch Points and Increasing Cleaning, and Communicating for Confidence.

To download the guide and start thinking of things you may need to do, please visit:

Boarding Up Shop Windows

To protect property, and to discourage vandalism and theft, many Toronto businesses and landlords, from large chains to small independents, have taken the step to board up their windows/facades. Here are a few resources to help you and/or your landlord if you choose to board up.

Watch this video from Home Depot detailing the steps and key measurements to board up single windows:

Read this instruction sheet posted on WikiHow detailing the steps and measurements to board up a single window:

The following are a few service providers who listed they perform window boarding up services. Please do your own due diligence when choosing who to hire. Ask for references and examples of past work. Get a quote or estimate. Contact your landlord. Please do not consider these service providers to be officially endorsed by Old Town Toronto or St Lawrence Market Neighbourhood BIA. Have one to add? Email info to

Control Retail Management:

Crystal Clear Installations:

Restoration Service


Distantly – Accepting Donations For Your Business

For the past few weeks TABIA (Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas) has been collaborating with a Toronto-based technology firm, and a number of concerned local citizens, to launch a tool to allow your small business to receive donations to put towards the overwhelming expenses you are likely experiencing at this time, such as rent and payroll.

The tool is

Create a free business profile in a few short minutes and securely connect your bank account to receive donations. Then share your page, via email and social media to advertise that you are grateful to accept any financial contributions from the community starting as low as $1. Donations are deposited directly into your bank account securely within 48 hours and there is no cost to you.

You can sign up for FREE here:

Don’t Turn Out The Lights On Small Business – Round 2

The DON’T TURN OUT THE LIGHTS ON SMALL BUSINESS #KeepTheLightsOn #SmallBusinessRentRelief social media campaign from March has been re-launched for April. The campaign’s creators need your help posting the image and text below to draw attention to the fact that many small businesses, even with wage subsidies, will not be able to pay their May rent. Please consider sharing the following message (edit as you see fit) and download and include the images here:

Facebook & Instagram image, click here to open and download.

Twitter image, click here to open and download.

Suggested text to include:

A small business might post the image with text such as:
“We’re nervous about our future and worried we might have to consider turning off the lights for good if we do not get rent relief. Unlike renters, commercial tenants such as us could face property seizures and lockouts in just a few days without #smallbusinessrentrelief.”
(Make sure to tag and/or mention Mayor John Tory, Premier Doug Ford, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario Minister of Small Business Prabmeet Singh Sarkaria. Their handles for each platform are below. It is important they are mentioned and or tagged.)

A landlord might post the image with text such as:
“As a small landlord we’re nervous about the future of small business. Without typical revenue levels, or in some cases none at all, they need #smallbusinessrentrelief. Let’s help small businesses #keepthelightson.” 
(Make sure to tag and/or mention Mayor John Tory, Premier Doug Ford, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario Minister of Small Business Prabmeet Singh Sarkaria. Their handles for each platform are below. It is important they are mentioned and or tagged.)

Handles to include:

Twitter Facebook Instagram LinkedIn
Mayor John Tory @JohnTory @John Tory @johntory @John Tory
Premier Doug Ford @fordnation @FordNation @fordnationadougford @Doug Ford
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau @JustinTrudeau @Justin Trudeau @justinpjtrudeau @Justin Trudeau
Ont. Minister of Small Business Prabmeet Singh Sarkaria @PrabSarkaria @prabmeetsinghsarkia @prabsarkaria


SURVEY: COVID-19 Impact Survey By St. Lawrence Market Neighbourhood BIA / Old Town Toronto Members

Through the survey LINK below, please share how things have changed for you and your staff, due to COVID-19, and any advice you have for other businesses.


User Friendly List of Government Resources via Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam

Ward 13 Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam’s office has compiled a user friendly list of resources offered from all levels of government in one place.

To access:

  1. Visit
  2. Scroll down to Links and Resources
  3. Choose User Friendly List of Government Resources

 One-Stop Information Centre For Businesses

The City of Toronto and the Toronto Region Board of Trade are partnering to deliver you a one-stop information centre where you will find the resources, tools, and critical support programs you need to manage the challenge you’re facing. Right now, you can watch and read how to access new government supports.


Canadian Federation of Independent Business

CFIB (Canadian Federation of Independent Business) has created an exceptional set of resources and FAQs including materials like a template lease deferral agreement to help with rent negotiations and other useful templates and guides.

Learn more:

Who can I write a letter to?

All levels of businesses are facing challenges due to COVID-19. Public officials need to hear from you now. Please click here  to copy and paste, review, edit, sign and send our drafted  letter. A list of public officials and their contacts is included.

Direct link:

10 Tips for closing your business securely

1)  Remove cash and place empty til in window/door.
2)  Lock visible goods in storage, (offsite if possible.)
3)  Post sign in door stating “NO CASH OR GOODS ON HAND/ YOU ARE ON CAMERA.”
4)  Ensure cameras, alarms and locks are all functioning properly.
5)  Leave lights on inside and out.
6)  Take a copy of insurance contacts, policies and inventory list.
7)  Post emergency key holder contact information inside, but not visible from windows.
8)  When checking on your business, do so during the day with a partner.
9)  Tell your business neighbours your plans and exchange contact information.
10) Report all suspicious activity by calling Toronto Police, non emergency at 416-808-2222.

Make sure your insurance is up to date

Right now, if something happens, the last thing you want deal with is a lapsed insurance policy. Make sure you have a copy of your insurance certificates and all the appropriate contacts (both at home and at work) and that your payments are up to date to avoid insurance interruption.

Who can promote my restaurant takeout/delivery service for free?

Find information below about the Tourism Toronto powered and Old Town Toronto’s list of businesses open:

1 of 3) If you are open, let Old Town Toronto help promote you.

Many of our members are still offering services, in modified fashion. For restaurants, this means takeout and delivery options. For other lines of business this often means online sales, virtual consultations etc. We are constantly updating our list of businesses open and want to add you. The list is published on our webpage and the webpage’s link has been emailed to our entire email subscriber list and shared on social media. Please click here now to add your business. We update daily.

2 of 3)  TO GO Toronto is offered free by Tourism Toronto

To Go Toronto will act as a resource for the delivery and takeout options that are currently available throughout Toronto – encouraging residents to support local businesses while respecting health guidelines and staying home. This new site is powered by Tourism Toronto in partnership with industry leaders and advocates.

To sign your restaurant up with a FREE listing:
1. Visit
2. Click “Add Your Restaurant”
3. Fill out the fields, make sure to include an image.
4. Hit ‘submit’ when complete.

3 of 3) Canada Take Out

Canada Take Out is encouraging Canadians across the country to order takeout en-masse in a show of support for their favourite local restaurants every Wednesday. Take a moment to visit the link below and add your establishment to the list. Together we can make Wednesdays #TakeoutDay.


Am I a member?
Every business and commercial property owner within the boundaries of The St. Lawrence Market Business Improvement Area (BIA), also known at Old Town Toronto, are automatically members of our not-for-profit organization. To view a map of our boundaries, please click here now.

Old Town Toronto encourages you to follow all recommendations and orders of public health officials including, but not limited to, staying at home as much as possible. Together we will #FlattenTheCurve.