Latest Announcements

Highlights of the Speech from the Throne
The federal government highlighted its priorities for Canada’s economic recovery plan through its Speech from the Throne last week. CDA was pleased to hear promises to support the performing arts, take new steps to support the artistic contributions of Black Canadians, invest in a national early learning and child care system and develop an Action Plan for Women in the Economy.
Click HERE to read learn more.

The federal government passed Bill C-20 to extend the
Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy program (CEWS). The approved legislation extends the program until November 21, with the possibility of further extensions until December 31, 2020. Various changes were made to calculations for the program, introducing a base rate for those who have experienced any decline in revenue (including those less than 30%), and top-up rates for those who have experienced revenue losses of over 50%. The new changes take effect retroactively to July 5, 2020. You can review the Backgrounder HERE which goes into further details.

In response to these extraordinary circumstances, and to help lead the Canadian performing arts sector toward recovery, the National Arts Centre developed a series of tools for the re-opening of performing arts centres and venues. These tools were developed in collaboration with leaders from more than 40 performing arts organizations from across the country.

August 20th - the Government of Canada announced CERB is extended to the end of September and will be succeeded by a simplified EI program and new recovery benefits for the self-employed and those working in the gig economy. Starting September 27th, Canadians still out of work will shift to one of four benefits. More details are available in the backgrounder.

July 17th - Changes to CEWS announced. The CEWS program was expanded to be more inclusive to employers who have seen a revenue drop of under 30%, but the change brings additional complexity that may make calculations more difficult. Young Associates put together this guide to help you understand your eligibility and calculate your subsidy under the July 17th changes.

July 7 - Final Components of Phase 2 of the COVID-19 Emergency Support Fund for Cultural, Heritage and Sport Organizations Announced. This final component helps address some of the gaps that have been identified by the industry across Canada since the fund was first implemented. Thus, the second phase provides support to other organizations, some of which do not normally receive funding from Canadian Heritage, the Canada Council for the Arts, Telefilm Canada or the Canada Media Fund. The goal is still to help maintain jobs and support business continuity for organizations whose viability has been affected. More details are available in the backgrounder. As part of Phase 2, the Canada Council for the Arts will distribute $7.8 million in emergency support for Indigenous and equity-seeking groups and organizations.

June 30 - Government Announces Extension of Rent Relief Program for Small Businesses
The Government of Canada is taking strong, immediate and effective action to protect Canadians and businesses from the impacts of the global pandemic through its COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. The Plan helps ensure that Canadians can pay for essentials like mortgages, rent and groceries, and to help businesses continue to pay their employees and their bills during this time of uncertainty.

June 26 – Expansion of CEBA program
As of June 26, 2020, businesses eligible for CEBA now include owner-operated small businesses that do not have a payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income directly, as well as family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll.

June 16 - CERB extended from 16 weeks to 24 weeks for workers who:
- stopped working due to COVID-19 or
- are eligible for Employment Insurance regular or sickness benefits or
- have exhausted their Employment Insurance regular benefits or Employment Insurance fishing benefits between December 29, 2019 and October 3, 2020.

June 5 - Prime Minister announces supports for Canadians with disabilities to address challenges from COVID-19. This support includes a special one-time, tax-free payment to individuals who are certificate holders of the Disability Tax Credit as of June 1, 2020. Read More

See previous updates and announcements HERE

COVID-19 ASO Response Group

The COVID-19 ASO Response Group submitted a joint letter to government officials, including the Minister of Canadian Heritage and the Minister of Finance, outlining the dire impacts of the pandemic on our sector and advocating for continued supports for arts and culture.

ASO Response Group, a group of Canadian arts service organizations and networks, working in solidarity to represent more than 2591 arts organizations, 15,482 artists, along with over 1000 affiliated supporters.

As arts service organizations representing broad constituencies, we stand together in solidarity with individuals, networks and organizations to advocate the centrality of arts in our society and create a path forward out of the COVID-19 crisis for the arts and culture ecosystem of Canada.

To complement the work of our individual organizations, we work in collaboration with a variety of sector partners – including but not limited to the Canadian Arts Coalition, Mass Culture, Imagine Canada, and Canada’s Performing Arts Alliance – that share our commitment to transparency, authentic consultation, and research.

Guidelines for Re-opening

The CDA has collected resources around guidelines for re-opening of studios and facilities. This information can be found HERE.

In response to these extraordinary circumstances, and to help lead the Canadian performing arts sector toward recovery, the National Arts Centre developed a series of tools for the re-opening of performing arts centres and venues. These tools were developed in collaboration with leaders from more than 40 performing arts organizations from across the country.


Sample Loss Report Spreadsheet - Template courtesy of Tau S. Bui, with English translation, provincial update by Pam Tzeng
Lost Income Tracking Spreadsheet - ArtsLinkNB
Coronavirus Response for the Live Performance Sector (provided by CAPACOA)
Metric Categories to consider for Arts & Culture - Impacts of COVID19 by Global Public Affairs
Offering venue space - Should governments and healthcare organizations need spaces for testing, blood donations, etc. would you be willing to offer your cultural venue? 
The New School of Finance - Financial tips and aid
"How-To"s for Accessing COVID-19 Government Relief Programs - from Young Associates (setting up your nonprofit's access to CRA, wage subsidy and applying for CERB)
Navigating the CECRA Program (Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance) - from Young Associates
Actsafe Resources and information sheets - Actsafe has created resources for the Performing Arts and Live Events industry on returning to safe operation.

Support - Financial and other
Apply to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit 
The AFC - emergency financial aid relief for artists 
BC Temporary Rental Supplement (BC-TRS) Program - Providing up to $500 a month to help renters and landlords during the COVID-19 pandemic
Leadership Emergency Arts Network Information for Organization - Pro bono response network to help Canadian professional non-profit arts organizations (big and small) deal with what is coming during this crisis.
Free tech help during the pandemic - list provided by Camp Tech
Rags to Reasonable - Financial services for people who don’t make money in a 'traditional' way, or who feel alienated by the language of finance. One-to-one coaching, group workshops, and online tools for financial stability and sustainability. Free 30 min coaching sessions on the 3rd Monday of every month!

Funding Councils and Foundations
BC Arts Council - announces operating assistance and  new Arts and Culture Resilience Supplement
Metro Vancouver Regional Cultural Project Grants
Conseil des arts de Montréal - Acceleration of grant payments
Canada Council for the Arts - Government $55M funds administered by the Council
Canada Council for the Arts FAQ - Advancing funds equivalent to 35% of annual grants held by all core funded organizations​

If you have a COVID-19 related question for the Canada Council, please email: Also, view their latest survey results HERE
Canadian Heritage - FAQ's and information for grants and contributions recipients
Community Cares: Emergency Response Fund for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Individuals Working in the Arts to provide $1,000 to individuals to sustain them through this difficult time.
Ontario Arts Council: Arts Response Initiative fund to provide is a one-time initiative to support individual artists, ad hoc groups and collectives, and arts organizations to carry out their activities in an environment of change.

We encourage all members to be in touch with their programming officers regarding their specific programming, future applications and extension requests. 

Support - Health and Wellness
Dancer Transition Resource Centre - counselling support 
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) - Dedicated mental health resources for coping with COVID-19
Peer to peer discussion forum - CAMH
Wellness Together Canada - provides free online resources, tools, apps and connections
Self-Care in challenging times by Dr. Blessyl Buan - View slide presentation HERE.
Helping Dancers Help Themselves. The International Association for Dance Medicine and Science has responded to COVID-19 with lives streams and webinars that address dancer mental health and safe dance practice during the current pandemic.
takecare19. A compilation of accessible—mostly free or low-cost, and inclusive resources to help cope and support mental wellness through COVID-19 (and beyond).
TOOLS to Manage Mental Health & Build Resilience (webinar hosted by CAPACOA and CDA)

Connecting Online
PACT weekly town halls
I Lost My Gig Canada or join the Facebook Group
The Social Distancing Festival  

Kid Friendly Activities

Thanks to our database partner SUMAC for this activity book
The Senate of Canada has also provided some great educational publications for age 6-13. Resources that can help students of all ages learn about the Senate and Parliament!
Bring Dance into your Home - initiative of the National Ballet School. Explore resources for all ages

Reports and Statistics
Hill Strategies Research releases report on Impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the arts. The issue highlights the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on the arts and culture, based on four Canadian and American surveys.

CAPACOA shows that the arts, entertainment, and recreation workforce is still experiencing a much slower recovery compared to workers in other cultural disciplines. CAPACOA offers insightful and easily digestible analyses of arts and culture research, view their latest blog post on Employment in Arts and Culture Industries.

Canadian Arts Coalition Survey points to Slow Recovery

Business / Arts and National Arts Centre - Arts Response Tracking Survey

COVID-19 Audience Outlook Monitor - Ontario – Ontario Ontario Arts Council

Entertainment Barometer: Segmentation of entertainment consumers in Quebec in times of COVID-19

Resource Links

Public Health Agency of Canada  Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Centre
Public Health Agency Travel Advisories
COVID-19: Financial help for Canadians outside Canada
The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety has a FREE Flu and Infectious Disease Outbreaks Business Continuity Plan available 
Dance Studies Association - Resources for moving dance pedagogy online
Impacts of COVID-19 on Canadian Artists and Independent Cultural Workers - Interim Report based on I Lost My Gig Canada Survey Data as of May 27
Early COVID-19 Impacts on OAC-Funded Arts Organizations survey findings
Culture Montréal - Impacts on Montreal’s Cultural Sector: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Questionnaire
Americans for the Arts - The Economic Impact of Coronavirus on the Arts and Culture Sector
Actsafe BC – Resources for the Arts and Entertainment Industry
World Health Organization - Basic protective measures against the new coronavirus (videos and infographics available)
Arts Nova Scotia - Grants to Organizations and Small Groups Application deadline: October 15

Canadian Dance Assembly
55 Mill Street, Suite 312
Case Goods Building #74
Toronto, ON M5A 3C4
Tel: 1.416.515.8444
Fax: 1.416.515.9444