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CFIB statement on Alberta lifting COVID-19 restrictions

Calgary, February 8, 2022 – We are pleased to see the Alberta government has announced it will lift its remaining COVID-19 related business restrictions. This is a step toward recovery and a new phase for Alberta small businesses. However, today’s announcement keeps in place the more damaging business restrictions, like the liquor service cut off and mandatory work from home, until the end of the month while proof of vaccination will lift on February 9.  

Latest survey results from the CFIB show:

  • 53 per cent of Alberta small businesses say current restrictions should be eased to allow more businesses to reopen  
  • Alberta small businesses are split (49% agree and 49% disagree) that proof of vaccination is a tool to fight the current pandemic situation  
  • 77 per cent of Alberta small businesses agree proof of vaccination (Alberta’s Restriction Exemption Program) should be removed once the economy fully reopens  

As we press forward it is important that we don’t slide back. We continue to call on the Alberta government to develop a “stay-open” plan to provide clarity and certainty as we continue to manage the pandemic. This would include ensuring there is adequate healthcare capacity to avoid any renewed restrictions or business closures. 

Removing business restrictions is a big step, but only the first towards a small business recovery plan. Currently, only 27 per cent of Alberta small businesses are at normal sales and 21 per cent are still actively considering bankruptcy. The average Alberta small business has inherited over $165,000 in new debt just to survive the restrictions of the past two years. 

We call on the Alberta government to back up today’s announcement with a plan to boost consumer confidence over the weeks ahead. After two years of uncertainty, messaging needs to shift towards encouraging the safe return to activities like dining, seeing a movie, going to the gym, events and travel so that our small businesses can begin the long road to recovery. 

- Annie Dormuth, Provincial Affairs Director, Alberta  

For media enquiries or interviews, please contact: 
Annie Dormuth 
Alberta provincial affairs director  
403-700-1945 
[email protected]   

About CFIB 
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 95,000 members (9,300 in Alberta) across every industry and region. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at cfib.ca

February 8, 2022

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