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March 31, 2020 

New information
Number of cases: 96 (confirmed and presumptive) as of Monday March 30
Provincial closure of non-essential businesses
The Manitoba government has issued a new public health order, effective 12:01am April 1, which will restrict the operation of non-essential businesses. Click here to view the entire schedule of restrictions and exemptions. In terms of the agriculture industry, the following exemptions are in place: 
Agriculture and food production
  • A business that is engaged in farming, harvesting, processing, manufacturing, producing or distributing food or farm products such as crops, animal products and by-products or beverages.
  • A business that is engaged in fishing, hunting or aquaculture.
  • A business that supports the food supply chain, including assembly yards, livestock auctions, food distribution hubs, feed mills, farm equipment suppliers, feed suppliers, food terminals and warehouses, animal processing plants and grain elevators.
  • A business that supplies agricultural producers with necessary products or services, such as seed, fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides, agricultural equipment, custom application of herbicides and pesticides and the repair of agricultural equipment.
  • A business that supports the safety of food, including animal and plant health and animal well-being.
  • A business that provides veterinary services or that supplies veterinary or animal control medications and related supplies and testing kits.
  • A business involved in ensuring the safe and effective management of animal waste, and includes a business responsible for the disposal of dead animals, rendering, nutrient management and biohazardous materials treatment or disposal.
CFA farm level survey
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Canadian Federation of Agriculture is running a weekly survey to identify potential issues throughout the industry. The survey closes on Thursday, and the results are used in weekly calls with the federal Minister of Agriculture. To take the survey, click here.
Federal wage subsidy program
The federal government has announced a wage subsidy program for all businesses regardless of size. This will subsidize up to 75 per cent for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020. More details on eligibility criteria will start with the impact of COVID-19 on sales and will be shared before the end of the month.

Agriculture and Resource Development offices
To help manage and minimize the spread of COVID-19, Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development offices are now closed to unscheduled drop-in services. For those requiring in-person service, call your local office to schedule an appointment. Telephone and internet services remain available at 1-844-769-6224 or by visiting
Health-related information
COVID-19 pandemic
Manitobans are reminded to call Health Links (1-888-315-9257) should you believe you have come into contact with COVID-19. You do not need to be tested if you are not experiencing symptoms. At this time, Manitobans are best served by listening to public health professionals, enacting social distancing protocols, ensuring that handwashing is taking place regularly, and ensuring that adequate supplies are on-hand without hoarding or over purchasing. We will all get through this together.
Mental health during COVID-19
The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health has put together a useful resource on how to process significant changes to your daily life and how to deal with your mental health during this time. Click here to access those tools and resources. The Farm, Rural, and Northern Support Services Line is available by phone at 1-866-367-3276. Manitobans struggling with anxiety can call the Never Give Up Manitoba support line at 204-925-0040 between the hours of 9am and 9pm Monday to Friday, and 10am to 4pm on weekends.
Limitations to public gatherings – in effect today
As authorized under The Public Health Act, the following measures will be in place, effective
12:01 a.m. on Monday, March 30.  Public gatherings will be limited to no more than 10 people at any indoor or outdoor place or premises.  This includes places of worship, gatherings and family events such as weddings and funerals.  This does not apply to a facility where health care or social services are provided including child-care centres and homeless shelters.  Retail businesses including grocery or food stores, shopping centres, pharmacies or gas stations must ensure separation of one to two metres between patrons assembling in the business.  Public transportation facilities must also ensure that people assembling at the facility are reasonably able to maintain a separation of one to two metres.
Interprovincial travel
Public health officials are strongly advising all Manitobans, including health-care providers, to cancel or postpone any non-essential travel.  This includes international travel and travel within Canada.  There should be no recreational, tourist or non-essential personal travel.  In addition, effective immediately, public health officials are recommending that anyone who returns from travel, either international or domestic, should self-isolate and self-monitor for symptoms for 14 days following their return.
Screening tool
Shared Health’s online screening tool is available and is the recommended first step that Manitobans should take prior to calling Health Links or attempting to visit a doctor’s office. Click here to access the online screening tool.
Testing facilities
A reminder that all testing facilities are to be accessed by referral from Health Links and are not walk-in clinics. The provincial government has announced more rural testing sites will be open in the coming days. Testing facilities at this time are:
Town Facility Address Hours of Operation
Winnipeg Access Fort Garry 135 Plaza Drive Monday to Friday, 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM;
Weekends, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Access Winnipeg West 280 Booth Drive
 Access Transcona 845 Regent Ave West
Mount Carmel Clinic 886 Main Street
Thompson Thompson Clinic Plaza Mall Daily from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Flin Flon Channing Auditorium 2 North Avenue
The Pas Royal Canadian Legion 4 Veterans Way
Brandon Brandon Regional Health Centre, Nurses' Residence Gym 150 McTavish Ave E Daily 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Selkirk Drive-Thru Community Testing Site 622 Superior Ave Daily 9:00AM to 4:00PM
Steinbach Drive-Thru Community Testing Site 365 Reimer Ave Daily 9:00AM to 3:00PM
Winnipeg Drive-Thru Community Testing Site 15 Barnes St. Daily 10:00AM to 6:00PM
Winkler Drive-Thru Community Testing Site 600 Park St. Daily 9:00AM to 3:00PM
Portage Drive-Thru Community Testing Site Stride Centre, 245 Royal Rd. Daily 9:00AM to 3:00PM
Eriksdale Drive-Thru Community Testing Stie 35 Railway Ave Daily 10:00AM to 3:00PM
Pine Falls École Powerview School 33 Vincent St Monday to Friday, 9:00AM to 4:00PM
Dauphin Drive-Thru Community Testing Site 217 Industrial Rd Daily 10:00AM to 3:00PM
Help Next Door MB
The Manitoba government and North Forge MB have partnered to release Help Next Door MB, a tool to put those in need of assistance with volunteers across the province while adhering to social distancing protocols. The tool allows Manitobans to register to be volunteers or to register need for assistance and needs range of things like needing help to get groceries or pick up medication, computer troubleshooting, or chores around the house. To learn more or to register, click here.
Industry-specific information
Guidance for employers of temporary foreign workers
New guidance has been issued for the employers of temporary foreign workers. Click here to access these guidelines. These measures include:
  • mandatory 14-day self-isolation periods, during which workers cannot work.
  • accommodations that allow for self-isolation, including 2-meter social distancing allowances.
  • links for documents to work in workers’ accommodations; and
  • employers’ duties in monitoring workers health and reporting symptomatic workers.
KAP COVID response page
KAP has developed a COVID-19 response page on our website, including helpful links and messages from the daily Alert. Click here to visit the page.
Manitoba checkpoints
The Manitoba government is establishing five highway checkpoints to provide information to travelers about required public health measures in place regarding COVID-19. Travelers will receive information about Manitoba’s current state of emergency, public health orders issued under The Public Health Act, and the need to immediately self-isolate for 14 days after travel in Canada or internationally. Checkpoints will be located on Hwy 1 at West Hawk Lake and on Hwy 1 west of Kirkella, PTH 16 west of Russell, PTH 5W west of Roblin and PTH 2 west of Reston/Souris. No traveler will be denied entry into Manitoba at these locations.
GST and duties deferral
The federal government has announced that small business owners and self-employed individuals can defer all Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST) payments until June, as well as customs duties owed for imports. Click here to access more information on this announcement.
Temporary changes to Manitoba employment standards
Under current employment standards legislation, employees who have been laid off for eight or more weeks in a 16-week period are deemed to have been terminated and are entitled to wages in lieu of notice. The province is making temporary amendments that would ensure any period of layoff occurring after March 1, 2020, will not be counted toward the period after which a temporary layoff would become a permanent termination.
New information about seasonal workers
Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada announced yesterday that exemptions are now in place to bring seasonal workers into Canada. Click here to access this information. We expect Employment and Social Development Canada to clarify requirements around domestic mobility, workplace/housing conditions and other isolation measures in the coming hours and days. KAP will continue to use this space to update this issue, and we continue to work with both the provincial and federal governments.
On-farm sanitation factsheet
To reduce the spread of COVID-19, we all must implement safety and sanitation protocols in our daily lives, and our farms need protocols as well. As preparations are made for the spring planting season, it is imperative that producers and staff practice appropriate sanitation.
The Manitoba Farm Safety Program and Keystone Agricultural Producers have developed a list of best practices to consider for on-farm sanitation as we approach the spring season. We will continue to update this list as more information becomes available from Manitoba Health and other public health agencies. To view the factsheet, click here.
Manitoba government call for assistance
The Manitoba government has put out a call to businesses and individuals for certain equipment and services. The full list is available online, but includes N95 respirators, surgical/procedure masks, nitrile and vinyl gloves, cleaning and disinfecting supplies, and a vast range of services. Producers are encouraged to protect themselves, but to donate excess supplies over and above what will be required for the farming season. Click here to access the full list and to complete the form to donate.
On-farm fuel tanks
We have heard from producers that have purchased new on-farm fuel tanks that in-person provincial inspections could take up to eight weeks to be accommodated. If this is an issue of concern for you, please email Joey at
Worker’s Compensation Board response to COVID-19
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the WCB Manitoba is providing relief measures for employers to help reduce the financial burden through this uncertain time. Click here to access WCB’s response.
CFIB essential service resource
Producers have been asking for a better understanding of what constitutes an essential service and what other provinces have done as province’s have moved toward enforced business closures. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business has developed a resource to show what is occurring in all provinces across the country. Click here to access their website.
Jobs in the agricultural sector
Given that many Canadians have been laid off from their jobs and that there is still some uncertainty as to how the federal government is working to bring seasonal workers into the country, we are encouraging employers in our sector to post jobs on three sites:
We will begin to promote these sites on social media in effort to reach out beyond our industry. Our hope is that we can match job seekers with employers as we approach the busy spring season.
CFA resources
The Canadian Federation of Agriculture has developed a resources page on their website on COVID-19. Click here to access the page.
Prescription Safety Eyewear Program
We advise that you call ahead to any optometrists you may seek an appointment with at this time to discuss your appointment status and to discuss safety protocols in place for visits.
Safe Work Manitoba online learning
Safe Work Manitoba has made several online courses available free of charge in collaboration with the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. Click here to access those courses. Several Safe Work Manitoba e-learning courses are also available free of charge. Click here to browse the course list.

Copyright © 2019 Keystone Agricultural Producers, All rights reserved.

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601-386 Broadway Ave, Winnipeg MB, R3C3R6

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