Ontario Chamber of Commerce, the WSIB and local chambers across
the province kick-off Small Business Week
The Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce (SSMCOC), in partnership with The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC), and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB), is celebrating, Small Business Week with its signature campaign, Small Business Too Big To Ignore that highlights the important contributions small businesses make to Ontario’s economy and local communities.
“Small businesses are the backbone of the Ontario economy and the heart of our community”, says Jason Naccarato, president of the Sault Chamber. “Over the course of Small Business Week, our local Chamber will be engaging with small businesses to show them that we recognize the significant role that they play in our community and discussing how we can support them.”
Locally, the Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce will hold its monthly Take 5 networking event on Wednesday, October 18th. That event will be hosted by Gliss Steak & Seafood from 5pm to 7pm and will be sponsored by Sovereign Communications Group.
The Chamber will be a sponsor of this year’s Bridges to Better Business event on Thursday, October 19th. Hosted by the Millworks – Centre for Entrepreneurship and the Business Development Bank of Canada, the Bridges to Better Business event offers learning and networking opportunities targeted to small businesses.
Also on Thursday, the local Chamber will be sitting down for a round table discussion with Jamie Schmale, MP of Haliburton – Kawartha Lakes – Brock and Deputy Critic for Natural Resources and Critic for FEDNOR, the Government of Canada’s economic development organization for Northern Ontario.
This week will also see the opening of nominations for the Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce “Outstanding Business Achievement Awards – Reach for the Stars”. The Chamber will be seeking nominations for 22 different awards to be presented at its Awards gala in January.
To kick-off Small Business Week, the OCC and the Hon. Jeff Leal, Minister Responsible for Small Business announced the launch of Small Business Access, a valuable program that the Government of Ontario is creating to help small businesses access support, information and resources when navigating Ontario’s regulatory environment.
“Small businesses constitute a large proportion of the OCC’s members and are powerful economic drivers in their local communities and across the province,” said Richard Koroscil, Interim President and ss community faces an array of challenges and we need to ensure we are supporting them. Small businesses are truly too big to ignore.”
Last year, the OCC published a report, Obstacles and Opportunities: The Importance of Small Business in Ontario, which identified many obstacles that small businesses in the province face including key infrastructure gaps, access to talent, and concerns about the rising costs of doing business.
To help raise awareness about the importance of Small Business Week, the OCC and local chambers have partnered with the WSIB; “Here at the WSIB, we value the time and effort small business owners put into contributing to local economies, and perhaps more important, making their dreams reality,” said Tom Teahen, President and CEO of the WSIB. “That’s why we’re proud to be partnering with the OCC for Small Business Week, to help share information and advice on workplace health and safety to small businesses throughout the province.”
Small businesses are fundamental to Ontario’s economy. They make up 98 per cent of all Ontario businesses and 30 per cent of the provincial GDP. Small businesses employ over 3 million Ontarians and account for over two-thirds of all private sector workers.