Government Gets it Right: Canada’s Hotel Sector Applauds Speech from the Throne
Today, the Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) is applauding the new direction taken by the federal government in the Speech from the Throne delivered this afternoon.
“The hotel sector has been working with government to carve out dedicated support programs for our sector, which faces continued restrictions impacting our ability to recovery. We are delighted to hear today that the government has listened,” said Susie Grynol, HAC’s President and CEO. “We have a strong champion for our sector in Minister Mélanie Joly, and she and her team have worked tirelessly to make sure that our voices were heard. Today’s Throne Speech reflected months’ worth of work and the Government’s commitment to stand behind our industry.”
Specifically, the Speech from the Throne outlined commitments to address several key priorities for the hotel sector, including:
- Extension of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy to Summer 2021;
- Improvements to the Government’s loan program, BCAP;
- Dedicated supports for the tourism and hospitality sectors who have been the hardest hit; and
- Tackling corporate tax avoidance by digital giants, like Airbnb.
“Hotels are critical infrastructure in their communities and were on the frontlines during this pandemic by providing spaces to self-isolate for repatriated Canadians, frontline workers, and those needing shelter,” added Grynol. “We are ready to play this critical role again in any future waves, and look forward to supporting public health and our communities in this regard.”
Hotels have been facing months of record low revenue and occupancy levels. This has had a significant impact on our employees and the viability of many hotel businesses. The sector includes one of the most diverse workforces in the country: 60% of workers are women, 37% are millennials, 31% are immigrants, and 29% are visible minorities. “These are the very populations that the government and the Bank of Canada have identified as vulnerable Canadians, and they will indeed be protected through these additional support measures,” concluded Grynol. “We look forward to keeping more hotel doors open and more workers employed following the announcements made today.”