Lavigne’s Canvas filling a need for safety equipment at a crucial time

NORTH BAY – The work being done at Lavigne’s Canvas in North Bay makes one think about what life must have been like during the war economy that took over Canada in the early ‘40s.

During World War II the Nazis were the threat, and we needed pilots, steel, meat and bread to defeat them. And Canada rose to meet this need and came to produce vast quantities of these things. Unemployment vanished.

Now the threat comes in the shape of a microscopic entity called COVID-19, and we need masks, latex gloves, Plexiglas and isopropyl alcohol to beat it.
But despite the enormous undertaking required to defeat this enemy, unemployment has become yet a greater problem than ever. However, not at Lavigne’s Canvas in North Bay, Ontario. Over just a few weeks, General Manager Patrick Lavigne Jr. has increased his staff from 3 to 17 employees.

It took some planning, and he made some mistakes along the way, but Lavigne has managed to turn what might have been a disaster for his custom boat supplies business into something rather impressive, by switching to the production of personal protection equipment (PPE).

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