TORONTO — ACTA is thanking all of the travel agency owners, employees and independent travel agents “for their incredible outreach to MPs across Canada”, all of which helped ensure the passing of Bill C-2.
Bill C-2 includes the Tourism and Hospitality Program with its financial support for sectors including travel agencies. The industry has been waiting for close to two months for additional funding after the wage subsidy, CRB and other programs wound down in late October.
The bill was passed late last night following months of intense advocacy by ACTA and other tourism and hospitality organizations, said Paradis.
“ACTA is extremely thankful that Parliament has finally passed Bill C-2, which includes the Tourism and Hospitality Program financial support programs,” she said. “The program will provide critically needed wage and rent subsidies to hard-hit travel agencies through to May 2022.”
ACTA is now calling on the Ministry of Finance and the Canada Revenue Agency to deliver the program without delay. “Travel agencies have been without support since October and still have little to no revenue,” said Paradis. “The new restrictions and fear about the omicron variant have jeopardized any hope of recovery this winter.”
Paradis notes that while the passage of Bill C-2 is a victory for the industry, it still doesn’t not provide support to independent travel agents.
“These entrepreneurs have also been devastated by the pandemic and the government must take action,” said Paradis.
“We understand from our meetings with government that delivering sector specific financial support to independent workers is challenging, however the government must work with industry to find a way to navigate through these challenges,” she said. “ACTA will continue to advocate for a new program that supports travel agency furloughed employees, sole proprietors and independent contractors.”