COVID-19 March 18 Update

TORONTO, March 18, 2020 - Toronto Arts Council is in constant contact with our partners at the City and is committed to providing accurate and up to date information for the arts community throughout the COVID-19 emergency response period. All prior releases and assembled resources are available here.

March 18 Updates:
The federal government has announced an $82 billion COVID-19 Economic Response Plan including provisions for support to workers and businesses. Artists and arts workers may be eligible for the Emergency Support Benefit which will be delivered through the Canada Revenue Agency to provide support to workers who are not eligible for EI and who are facing unemployment. We will bring more information as soon as it is available.

The federal government has closed borders to the US for all non-essential travel - in particular for recreation and tourism.

Mayor John Tory will be making a pubic announcement Friday morning with specific city initiatives to address COVID-19. TAC will release a bulletin following the Mayor's statement with any specific arts related announcements and information.

On March 17 the Province of Ontario announced a State of Emergency effective until at least March 31, which enforces the previously recommended closures of theatres and restaurants.

WHO - The World Health Organization has cautioned against using ibuprofen (advil) to manage symptoms of COVID-19.

Other External Emergency Funding Initiatives Announced To Date:

Woodcock Fund Grant — emergency funds for writers mid-project
NABS financial assistance for media, marketing, and communications pros
The AFC — Emergency financial aid for entertainment pros
Unison — financial aid for musicians
Emergency Survival Fund for LGBTQ2S artists, performers, tip-based workers
CANADIAN Low-Income Artist/Musician Relief Fund

TAC Updates:
During these unprecedented times, Toronto Arts Council will be sending regular bulletins to our mailing list about COVID-19 updates, the steps we’re taking to help the Toronto arts community, what you can do to help, and more.

Please forward these regular bulletins on to friends and colleagues.

For those who are not on our mailing list, SIGN UP to receive regular COVID-19 bulletins from Toronto Arts Council. You may unsubscribe by clicking on the link at the bottom of this email at any time.

A reminder for producers postponing or cancelling events to track impact. Any potential compensation to be released following the crisis period will require documentation of impact; consider spending the time now to track and document revenue loss.

A note for all TAC grant recipients:
With the outbreak of COVID-19, TAC is aware that grant recipient organizations may face extraordinary challenges.

For specific questions and to advise TAC of concerns, please contact your program manager.
Organizations or collectives may postpone or adjust projects affected by the COVID-19 outbreak without penalty from TAC.

Organizations receiving core funding will not be required to have replacement programming for events or activities that are delayed, changed or cancelled due to COVID-19.

Contact TAC: Please note that TAC staff will remain available to answer your questions and provide updated information throughout the outbreak. Please contact us any time.

Other resources: Please see the TAC COVID-19 Updates page for links and resources including statements from Canada Council for the Arts and Ontario Arts Council.


About Toronto Arts Council
Toronto Arts Council (TAC) is the City of Toronto’s funding body for artists and arts organizations. Since 1974, TAC has played a major role in the city’s cultural industries by supporting a very broad range of artistic activity. From the emerging artist to the most established, from celebrated institutions to arts that challenge convention, TAC is typically the first funder to offer support. Today, TAC grants lead to exhibitions, performances, readings and workshops seen annually by over 9.5 million people. Through its ongoing funding of over $18 million annually, TAC cultivates a rich engagement between artists and audiences. It is proud to reflect Toronto’s vibrancy through the diversity of the artists, arts communities and audiences that it serves. For more about Toronto Arts Council, visit

Contact Information
For information, please contact Susan Wright, Deputy Director: 416-392-6802 x 211 |