Page 7 - CFIB
P. 7

begin to recover from COVID. We will also be            eyes as a result of COVID restrictions. In about

        working hard to highlight many key small business       10 cases, these calls actually turned into suicide

        issues in the expected Federal election campaign.       prevention calls, something our team was just not
        Longer term, we have many policies we want to           adequately prepared for.  When I think about some

        improve, including making Employment Insurance          of the messages that have been most powerful in
        less expensive for small business owners, reducing      responding to panicked entrepreneurs, they’ve been

        credit card processing fees – particularly for          to tell them that they are not alone and that they’ve

        e-commerce transactions and addressing the              done nothing wrong. Many otherwise successful
        growing shortage of qualified labour.                   business owners feel like they have failed when

                                                                their business began to really struggle during
        Q: COVID aside, what is the biggest advocacy            lockdowns.  They felt somehow that they had let

        challenge for the CFIB?                                 their employees or their family members down. In

        A: Our biggest challenge continues to be our
        work in protecting the victories we’ve worked

        hard to achieve.  Back in 2017, the new Federal               Half of the country’s GDP and

        government proposes sweeping changes to small                  60 per cent of private sector
        business policies that would have wiped out                  employment is created by small

        many of the major benefits that balance out the                           businesses

        incredible risks entrepreneurs take on every day.
        Many civil servants profoundly misunderstand

        small businesses and think of them as little big        reminding them that they are not alone and that
        businesses. They convinced the previous Finance         no one was adequately prepared for the pandemic,

        Minister that small business owners were a bunch        it seemed to really help.  The other message I

        of tax cheats and we had to take on a massive year      continue to give to business owners is to say thank
        long battle to push back against the government’s       you.  I thank them for their perseverance in the face

        proposed changes.  We were mostly successful, but       of this incredible once in a 100-year challenge. I
        it reminded me that we need to be vigilant to protect   thank them for everything they’ve done to protect or

        the ground we’ve gained over the past 50 years.         create jobs, to give back to their communities and to

                                                                make Canada a better place.  I think all Canadians
        Q: Do you have an anecdote that illustrates the good    should thank the local business owners who add so

        work the CFIB has done this year?                       much to the fabric of our country.

        A: I can’t tell you how many veteran entrepreneurs                                
        have called us this year in tears, reporting that

        their businesses were crumbling before their

 6                                                                                                                     7
   2   3   4   5   6   7   8