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Ontario Govt. Investing $15m For Agri-Food Worker Health & Safety

Friday June 12th, 2020, 11:53am

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The Government of Ontario has announced $15 million in funding to enhance health and safety measures on farms and in food processing facilities to better protect workers in the agri-food sector during the COVID-19 outbreak.

“Agri-food businesses and their hardworking employees play a critical role in keeping our food supply chain strong, providing us with fresh, high-quality and nutritious food all year round,” says Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “Today’s investment will allow farmers to adapt to this new environment and implement additional health and safety measures during the COVID-19 outbreak.”

The province’s Enhanced Agri-food Workplace Protection Program provides cost-share funding for farmers to purchase personal protective equipment and to implement workplace modifications and other measures.

The government says today’s announcement more than triples the previous investment through this program by the governments of Canada and Ontario. Both levels of government had committed a total of up to $4.5 million for farmers and provincially licensed meat processors to enhance worker safety under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership program.

Some of the measures already approved through this program include purchases of PPE, temporary housing for ill workers, building physical barriers for worker separation, enhanced hand washing facilities and tent rentals to expand lunch room space.

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