Ontario helping manufacturers ramp up production of personal protective equipment


Published June 2, 2020 at 6:48 pm


At a June 2 press conference, Ontario Premier Doug Ford discussed additional measures to help cope with the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and announced that the province will be investing in local manufacturers in order to keep frontline workers and communities safe during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Today (June 2), more businesses are receiving financial support through the Ontario Together Fund to increase their capacity and ramp up their production to make personal protective equipment (PPE). 

The announcement was made by Premier Doug Ford, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, and Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade.

“Our entrepreneurs, businesses and workers are stepping up and unleashing the full strength of Ontario’s manufacturing might ― sometimes doubling or tripling their output and working modern-day miracles in the fight against COVID-19,” said Premier Ford.

“Our government is proud to partner with our champions in the business community to establish ‘made-in-Ontario’ as the gold-standard for medical supplies and equipment here in Canada and around the world.”

The three new companies receiving support are Southmedic, Sterling Industries and SRB Technologies.

Southmedic is a Barrie, Ontario-based medical device manufacturer that distributes to over 60 countries. Ontario is providing $1.8 million to help ramp up the company’s current production as well as purchase new moulding equipment. 

Sterling Industries is a Concord, Ontario-based contract manufacturer and assembler of medical devices and sub-components. Ontario is providing $1,023,325, which will allow the company to increase its production of face shields from 200,000 per week to over a million per week. 

SRB Technologies is a Pembroke, Ontario-based producer of self-powered emergency lighting and self-powered exit signs. Ontario is providing $59,889 to help the company convert a portion of its production from emergency lighting solutions to manufacturing medical-grade face shields.

“Ever since the COVID-19 outbreak began, Ontario businesses have shown incredible collaboration, resilience and determination to tackle this crisis,” said Minister Fedeli.

“Many of our innovators have stepped up to help produce much needed medical supplies. Now that we’re in the first stage of restarting our economy, I encourage all businesses to keep innovating and review our provincial safety guidelines in order to protect their employees in this new environment.”

Back in April, the government launched the $50 million Ontario Together Fund.

This was launched to support the development of proposals submitted by businesses and individuals through the Ontario Together web portal and help businesses retool their operations.

All submissions received through the portal are being reviewed and prioritized in order to focus on solutions.

Back in March, the government launched the Ontario Together web portal.

This appealed to Ontario’s manufacturers, entrepreneurs and innovators to provide essential supplies and equipment to support frontline workers amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

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