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QUEEN’S PARK — Mike Schreiner released the following statement in response to news that Ontario will enter Stage 1 of the reopening plan on Friday:

“After the Premier’s lack of clarity and information teasing, small businesses finally have some clarity on when they will be able to reopen.

But small businesses are not out of the woods. They need support from the government.

That’s why the Premier must immediately provide a third round of funding from the Small Business Support Grant and expand the eligibility to support struggling small businesses that have fallen through the cracks.

Operating at 15% capacity will not immediately solve the cash flow challenges most small businesses face. And many small businesses will need help to reopen after the third wave lockdown.

As we reopen, it’s vital that the Premier listens to public health experts and ramps up testing and tracing capacity so we can get ahead of this virus and avoid a fourth wave. That means making testing more accessible, convenient and routine.

Small businesses cannot survive another lockdown. And Premier Ford must learn from his mistakes and invest in the public health capacity needed to contain the virus.”

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