Red Tape Awareness Week: Red tape frustration brought to life in new collection of small business stories

TORONTO, Jan. 10 /CNW/ - To officially launch Canada's second annual Red Tape Awareness Week, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) today released the Red Tape Diaries, a collection of firsthand accounts detailing the frustration and hardship Canadian small business owners face as a direct result of excessive government regulation and red tape.

Contained within the pages of CFIB's eye-opening compilation is a variety of harrowing tales which have been submitted by small business owners from across the country. Examples include a Toronto-based store owner whose primary source of advertising was taken away due to the passing of an overbearing municipal by-law, and a New Brunswick-based bakery whose store's opening was delayed because of conflicting information regarding provincial licensing.

"This is just a tiny sampling of the hundreds of thousands of stories that are out there. It all adds up to a colossal waste of entrepreneur's time and money and clearly diverts their focus away from where it needs to be - building their businesses, creating jobs, and expanding the economy," said CFIB Vice-President for Western Canada and regulatory reform expert Laura Jones.

A 2010 CFIB report estimated that regulation costs Canadian businesses a staggering $30 billion each year in compliance costs alone, the brunt of which is being felt by the smallest firms. Whereas businesses with more than 100 employees spend a yearly average of $1,117 per employee to comply with regulations, companies with 0 to 4 employees spend an average of $5,825.

According to Canadian businesses, the burden could be reduced by at least 25 per cent without harming the legitimate objectives of regulation such as protecting health and safety. "This is the equivalent of a $7.5 billion annual stimulus package. It's time for Canadians to demand that governments take this issue seriously. We hope these stories will help," concluded Catherine Swift, President and CEO.

CFIB will be conducting a number of other special initiatives this week to draw attention to the issue and encourage entrepreneurs across Canada to advocate for change. Visit CFIB's Red Tape Awareness Week official web and Facebook pages to find out what's on tap for the rest of the week.

To read all the diaries visit:

As Canada's largest association of small- and medium-sized businesses, CFIB is Powered by Entrepreneurs™. Established in 1971, CFIB takes direction from more than 107,000 members in every sector nationwide, giving independent business a strong and influential voice at all levels of government and helping to grow the economy.


For further information:

or to arrange an interview, contact Meghan Carrington or Adam Miller at 416 222-8022 or

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