Dear AED Member:
The world, our governments, our industry and the association are in uncharted territory as we deal with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. However, AED is here to provide guidance, updates and information to assist you through these uncertain times.
Please become familiar with the Center for Disease Control & Prevention’s (CDC) Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers. The Canadian government also has resources available for businesses. The CDC, the Public Health Agency of Canada and your state, provincial and local health departments will have the most up-to-date resources regarding COVID-19.
Late last week, the U.S. House approved legislation to address the pandemic (the Families First Coronavirus Response Act). The bill is aimed at mitigating the economic impact of COVID-19, including bolstering unemployment insurance and guaranteeing free Coronavirus diagnostic testing.
Additionally, the legislation requires private sector companies with fewer than 500 employees to provide two-weeks of paid sick leave (80 hours for full-time employees and this typical number of hours over two-weeks for part-time employees).
With certain exceptions (including possibly small businesses under 50 employees granted hardship waivers), the proposal also requires private sector businesses with fewer than 500 employees to provide up to 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave. Employers are entitled to a tax credit for paid sick, family and medical leave under the legislation and the Treasury Secretary is provided with regulatory authority to help with cash flow issues, for example, waiving penalties on failing to deposit payroll taxes in anticipation of the credit.
The Senate is expected to consider and pass it this week for the president’s signature. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has released an analysis of the legislation, featuring examples and essential details.
The latest congressional action is expected to be the first of what will likely be several legislative packages related to COVID-19 and its fallout. AED, along with broader business groups, are engaging lawmakers to ensure meaningful assistance is provided to the nation’s job creators, particularly small-medium-sized companies, as Congress considers future efforts.
Upcoming AED Events
Please note that AED has canceled its annual Ottawa Parliament Hill Day, March 30-31, due to COVID-19. Stay tuned for decisions on future AED events as those judgements will be made on a case-by-case basis after studying the latest data on the outbreak.
Also, be on the lookout for online programming specifically for AED members on dealing with COVID-19 and its economic impact.
We’re Here for You
AED is standing by to help our members, however possible, during this challenging time. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to your Regional Manager or anyone on the association’s staff for assistance.
Brian P. McGuire
President & CEO