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Ottawa Board of Trade Expanding Strategy to Help Protect Businesses from COVID-19 Fourth Wave

New Antigen Rapid Testing Kit Distribution Sites Added

For Immediate Release: September 14th, 2021: In its on-going battle against a fourth COVID-19 assault on business, the Ottawa Board of Trade (OBoT) is expanding its antigen rapid testing kit distribution program until March 2022, supported by the Ontario government. OBoT is putting pick-up locations in the East and West of the Capital after already handing out more than 52,000 individual tests in the central location to almost 450 businesses.

Second, at those centres, businesses will be able to pick up decals for their storefronts to show customers they are taking tangible steps to protect their employees and their customers and have taken the oath.

Third, as an early champion of vaccine passports, OBoT President and CEO Sueling Ching knows we need to use every single tool in our arsenal to keep our economy open, particularly in a city that depends heavily on tourism. Ottawa usually sees about 11 million visitors a year. The pandemic has had a crushing impact on our local economy, so OBoT will continue to encourage the next Parliament to move very quickly on vaccine passports.

Ching says, “By actively supporting rapid testing, the POST promise, vaccine passports and working with Ottawa Public Health on helping promote workplace vaccine policies, OBoT is committed to ensure we create an environment in which business stays open safely so that we can protect our economy and our public health. We cannot consider further lockdowns that have impacted businesses and every aspect of our community.”

A recent survey conducted by OBOT in collaboration with Leger and other big city Chambers across the country, confirmed that 98% of business managers and owners who responded had seen their business negatively impacted in the past 18 months.

Sean Cochrane, President of TCC Canada, who is supporting the rapid testing distribution program says, “Small business is the backbone of our community and they’ve been hit harder by this pandemic than anything before. Whatever we can do to help support our communities recover is top of mind and this initiative is a great step towards helping these businesses get out of this slump. We are all stronger together and together we will get through this monumental disaster.”

Cochrane is donating two TCC locations: 1000 Innovation Drive, 5th Floor, Kanata North and the other at 1730 St. Laurent Boulevard, 8th Floor. Appointments are necessary and can be booked on the OBoT website. Kits have already been shipped.

OBoT has been working hard since the election was called to ensure that the interests of business owners are front and centre, and has been collaborating with colleagues at the provincial and national level.

For more information or to book Sueling Ching for an interview:

Kimothy Walker