Chris Gray is a Senior Consultant based in Ottawa who worked on Parliament Hill as a legislative assistant for the Liberals. Chris can be contacted at

With the Prime Minister and government officials providing unprecedented daily updates on the COVID-19 health crisis, communications and advocacy efforts seemingly move at light speed and change on a dime. Grassroots continues to monitor the changing atmosphere, with updates available on our COVID-19 Resources page.

$82B aid package

After some political wrangling with the opposition parties, the government has now passed Bill C-13, the $82-billion aid package to help Canadians struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic — legislation that will improve access to Employment Insurance and other programs that provide money to workers and businesses in need. The crisis continues to have a massive effect on almost all industries.  Moving forward, we can expect other stimulus announcements from the government aimed at helping businesses stay afloat.

The changing advocacy environment

As social distancing is now the norm, advocacy efforts will have to shift towards digital initiatives – email and social media campaigns. In many ways, lobby groups can be useful conduits to the government in terms of relaying what’s happening on the ground per industry.  Moving forward, the legislative workload will get heavier once the government shifts from holding near-daily announcements into “the actual administrative rolling out of funds and programs”.

Looking ahead:

  • House of Commons tentatively set to resume regular sittings on April 20;
  • Federal Budget set for March 30th has been postponed indefinitely;
  • The Conservative leadership race has pushed back the June 27th convention; and
  • Many organizations are communicating with government seeking help – charities, hotel sector, tourism, for instance.

Grassroots can help!

The need for clarity, consistency and collaboration between the private sector and government has never been greater. Let Grassroots Public Affairs help support your critical  communication and advocacy initiatives during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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