The Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses (CFIB) criticized the Ontario government on Tuesday for their preferential treatment of big box stores over small businesses.
"No other province has locked down small retailers while handing huge competitive advantages to big-box stores," the CFIB stated.
Doug Ford's government has been criticized throughout the pandemic for its alleged preferential treatment of big box stores over small businesses, with many questioning why massive retailers packed with dozens of people may remain open while small businesses catering to a few customers at a time can only offer roadside pickup.
The statement from CFIB comes as the Ford government announces new restrictions across Ontario. Ontarians are now subject to stay-at-home orders, allowing people to leave their houses only for essential purposes or exercise.
The new rules also place further restrictions on retail stores, with non-essential retailers only allowed to remain open between 7:00 am and 8:00 pm. The new restrictions do not apply to convenience stores, gas stations, and retail outlets which mainly sell food.
The move comes after consideration by the province to implement curfews as has been done in Quebec. The Ford government ultimately decided not to impose such curfews.