Heart & Stroke temporarily lays off employees due to the impact of COVID-19

(Toronto) — Due to the impact of COVID-19, Doug Roth, CEO, Heart & Stroke issued the following statement announcing the decision to temporarily lay off 45% of its employees.

“In response to the unprecedented situation we find ourselves in due to COVID-19, I regretfully announced today that we’ve had to make the difficult decision to temporarily lay off 45% of our workforce, which represents more than 200 valued employees.  

Charities have been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Following important public health restrictions, Heart & Stroke cancelled or postponed all its events this spring/summer, resulting in an immediate revenue loss of $25 million.

We thoroughly considered all cost-cutting options and have taken steps reduce all expenses and cancelled discretionary projects. We also reviewed the government’s wage subsidy carefully. At this time there is no guarantee that we will qualify, and further, it will not be substantial enough to offset losses. 

We wish there was another way. All our employees are Heart & Stroke family and valued team members.

Going forward, we will continue to raise awareness, inform, educate and support the public and our community of people with lived experience of our diseases, a community who is at higher risk during the COVID-19 pandemic, through this uncertain time.  

We will continue to fund critical heart disease and stroke research, and collaborate with researchers, clinicians and our partner organizations to understand and address COVID-19 and its relationship to our diseases. 

And we will fundraise online and through email, appealing to our supporters to continue to donate if they can. More than ever we need urgent support for our mission, during this challenging time. 

In the next few months, we will refocus how we do our work to ensure the success of our mission to promote health, save lives and enhance recovery.”

All Heart & Stroke offices are closed as we seek to protect everyone’s health during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We are still working virtually, remaining active and committed to our communities. Essential services like our call centres, website and online communities continue

For more information

Teresa Roncon
Senior Manager, Communications
Heart & Stroke
416-489-7111, ext. 23060

About Heart & Stroke

Life. We don’t want you to miss it. That’s why Heart & Stroke leads the fight against heart disease and stroke. We must generate the next medical breakthroughs, so people in Canada don’t miss out on precious moments. Together, we are working to prevent disease, save lives and promote recovery through research, health promotion and public policy.