FedDev Ontario supported 80 Windsor-Essex firms in 2020

Windsor-Tecumseh MP Irek Kusmierczyk. Courtesy Irek Kusmierczyk/Twitter.

Dozens of businesses in Windsor-Essex got help from the federal government in weathering the COVID-19 storm.

The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev) provided a total of $11.1-million in grants to help them continue operations and protect jobs during the pandemic, through the federal government’s Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF).

So far, over $184-million has been provided to businesses across southern Ontario, as well as expanded eligibility criteria for businesses.

Windsor-Tecumseh MP Irek Kusmierczyk announced on Tuesday that 80 businesses and organizations benefitted from the RRRF in 2020, protecting over 1,700 jobs in the region. The business types ranged from restaurants and retail outlets, to manufacturing and tourism-driven firms.

With Windsor-Essex hit hard due to a loss of manufacturing and distribution jobs, Kusmierczyk singled out two local businesses, injection-molding firm Quality Models Limited in Tecumseh, and Windsor-based Morton Food Service.

“The pandemic has presented tremendous challenges to businesses in our region and across the country,” said Kusmierczyk in a media release. “Despite these challenges, I am continually amazed by the resilience and ingenuity demonstrated by businesses like Quality Models and Morton Food Service in Windsor-Essex. Their stories are two of many that emphasize the importance of FedDev Ontario‚Äôs Regional Relief and Recovery Fund in supporting businesses and empowering them to adapt and deliver essential services to our community.”

In the case of Morton Food Service, an RRRF grant helped cover fixed costs and manage continued cash flow. With bars and restaurants going to takeout or curbside service only, the business’ revenue was reduced.

For Quality Models, the pandemic resulted in many of its clients suspending operations, leading to a decline in sales. The RRF helped cover operating costs for the company’s automotive and recreational boating products.

Businesses seeking help in the pandemic can learn more about the RRRF by visiting its page on the official FedDev Ontario website.