We are in a very troubling and challenging time for the Meetings Industry in Canada. With the global fear around COVID-19, Canada is feeling the impact, more than even last week. Each of you and your organizations are no doubt feeling the pains of cancellations and postponements.
We are very concerned about the public health and safety of our delegates and staff as we navigate this situation. I trust that you all are following the Public Health Agency of Canada’s guidance on public gatherings. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/health-professionals/mass-gatherings-risk-assesment.html
As we navigate through this crisis, your MMBC Board is actively engaging with various stakeholder organizations who are advocating and lobbying the government for support. These efforts are creating channels and producing results as we seek regulatory and funding support. Along with Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC), Business Events Canada, Conventions Centres of Canada, Hotel Association of Canada and others, we have been working to establish a plan for mitigation and recovery.
None of this alleviates the immediate challenges we are facing. Each of you are in the battle for near-term business and we know that is exactly what you should be focused on at a time such as we are experiencing. It is also important that we take on this challenge together. Our community is critical. Not only to producing safe and secure events today, but we must also prepare for the path of recovery ahead.
MMBC will continue to advocate for you federally through TIAC and connect with our industry stakeholders to remain engaged in the conversation to ensure that we continue to elevate the important economic and social driver that business events and conferences are of Canada.
If we can be a support or resource to you as we move through this challenge, please reach out. We have been adding links to our website to point the industry to relevant meetings relevant data provided by various organizations.
You are not alone.
Clark GrueChair, Meetings Mean Business Canada