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Planning for Reopening Businesses in Nova Scotia

Thursday, May 28, 2020

The Province of Nova Scotia has announced the next steps toward reopening the province. Most businesses ordered to close due to COVID-19 can open starting June 5.

If they are ready to open, the following businesses can open starting June 5:

  • Restaurants for dine-in, as well as takeout and delivery
  • Bars, wineries, distilleries and taprooms
  • Personal services, such as hair salons, barber shops, spas, nail salons and body art establishments
  • Fitness facilities, such as gyms, yoga studios and climbing facilities

Business and customers must continue to follow the public health measures around physical distancing and gathering limits.

Online Resource to Provide Guidance to Businesses on Reopening

To support businesses that are currently open, and those planning to reopen or expand their services, the province has developed an online resource at https://novascotia.ca/reopening-nova-scotia/

The site provides information to help businesses begin to develop plans and procedures to keep themselves, their staff and the public safe. For example, businesses and organizations can use the COVID-19 Prevention Plan Checklist to help create a healthy workplace.

If Your Business Was Required to Close

To reopen, industry associations representing businesses and organizations that were required to close under the Health Protection Act Order must develop a plan for their sector. Public Health is meeting with industry associations to share public health principles and provide information to help them develop their plans. Industry associations need to share their plans with the businesses and organizations in their sector. Businesses and organizations should contact their association to learn what they need to do to reopen safely.

Here are the tourism-related sector associations who have been consulted:
- Restaurants Canada
- Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia
- Campground Association of Nova Scotia
- Wineries and Craft Breweries Associations

Industry associations can submit their plans to government for approval at NSEconomy@novascotia.ca. Questions on protocols, re-opening plans, and current health guidelines can also be sent to this email address.

If Your Business Was Not Required to Close

Businesses and organizations that weren’t required to close under the Health Protection Act Order should develop a plan to prevent the spread of COVID-19. However, these plans do not have to be submitted for government approval.

Plans should show how businesses and organizations will comply with the Health Protection Act Order and public health directives (including social distancing and gathering limits) and ensure the safety of employees and customers.

Businesses and organizations need to share their plans with employees and have it available if requested. They also need to provide their plans if provincial inspectors ask for it.

Small Business Reopening and Support Grant

The Small Business Reopening and Support Grant is a $25 million fund to provide financial support for eligible small businesses, non-profits, charities and social enterprises working in some of the most affected sectors to help open safely and receive advice on how to become more resilient in the coming months. 

This support program includes a grant up to $5,000 to help organizations safely reopen and a Business Continuity Voucher for advice and support (up to $1,500)

Eligible small businesses include those expressly ordered to close under the public health order, small independent retailers, independent gas retailers and dental practices.  Businesses who received the Small Business Impact Grant in April will be eligible for this program and will be contacted directly.

Online applications will begin June 1. Information is available at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus