Minister’s Statement on COVID-19 Support for Sport Sector

April 1, 2020 – Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, has released the following statement about immediate responses to novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for B.C.’s amateur sport sector:

“Government invests more than $50 million annually to make sure everyone has opportunities to participate in and enjoy the benefits of sport.

“COVID-19 and the need for physical distancing has had a significant impact on everyone, including those in the sport sector. B.C.’s sport leaders responded quickly to the orders, direction and recommendations from the provincial health officer and cancelled tournaments, training schedules and other activities to protect people’s health. We understand this has had a significant impact on the province’s athletes, coaches, officials, sport organization staff and volunteers.

“Starting in April 2020, the Province, through viaSport, will provide provincial, disability and multi-sport organizations with the ability to access $5 million, which represents 50% of their annual 2020-21 provincial funding allocation, to provide these organizations with access to cashflow sooner.

“Sport plays a powerful role in helping people lead healthy, productive lives and contributes to the health and wellness of our communities. These measures are what we can do right away within the existing sport sector budget to help organizations during the pandemic. This is a first step and we will have more to announce regarding additional supports for the sector in the weeks ahead.”

Learn More:

ViaSport’s FAQ for provincially funded sport organizations: https://www.viasport.ca/news/faqs-events-and-programs-funded-viasport-and-province-bc-affected-covid-19

Provincial support for the COVID-19 pandemic: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/emergency-preparedness-responserecovery/covid-19-provincial-support

Supports for B.C.’s small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/employment-business-and-economicdevelopment/business-management/small-business/covid-19_small_business_supports.pdf

For information and supports that are not health-related, call 1 888 COVID19 anytime between 7:30 a.m. and 8 p.m., seven days a week, or visit: www.gov.bc.ca/COVID19