Throughout the difficult experiences that Canadians have had to face in the past one year, it seems that personal care businesses have been hit the hardest. They have borne the brunt of Covid-19 since the very beginning of the pandemic.
Ontario’s three-step plan did not include the reopening of personal care businesses until the second step. This was not scheduled to happen until 70 to 80 per cent of adults in the province were vaccinated with at least one dose and 25 per cent with two doses on July 2.
Finally, personal care businesses reopened as of June 30. For some, this news could not have come sooner as many still struggle to stay afloat.
“I was lucky enough to just find a job working in a cafe for the meantime, keeping up my income there,” said Anna Lender, an apprentice at Perri & Palmacci Hair Company in Toronto. “Everyone was very frustrated because not many cases were coming from salons.”
According to Statistics Canada, small businesses make up 98 per cent of Canadian employers, which greatly impacts the Canadian economy.
Lender had to come up with new ways to make a living when her job at the hair salon had been closed for seven months.
“I was doing some backyard cuts for just some people around the neighbourhood,” said Lender.
With COVID cases rapidly decreasing, the government then moved the original step three to June 30.
“The reality is there’s haircuts happening out there. It’s in backyards, it’s in garages. You’ve created an underground economy and given the COVID case declines, I believe there is a pathway to safely reopen in advance of July 2.” Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown said in a conference that took place just two weeks before the announcement of step three.
Since the reopening, many are back on track with business as usual. Personal care businesses are able to reopen with restrictions in place, including a 50 per cent capacity limit for indoor and 75 per cent limit for outdoor services. “We’re pretty much booked until mid-August, which seems like not that much, considering seven months worth of people, but it’s been nonstop,” said Lender.
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