Prioritise local small businesses

Opening up should prioritise local small business esp. in the retail and services sector over larger remote enterprises (retail parks, mega stores) which would attract large groups from greater distances. While the supermarkets have been flexible and supportive in this crisis 'shopping' is still seen as the high-risk activity. Increased hygiene and changes in social distancing arrangements should be a pre-requisite of approval to re-open. Small retail and primary producers (farm gate sales, fishers) should also be supported/subsidised to provide delivery and 'van' services for rural areas or extended non-retail areas (i.e housing schemes).

Why the contribution is important

Smaller shops & business by definition involve fewer people at one time and reduced journey times especially for those who can access on foot. This reduces the sizes of groups whilst stimulating the local economy more than multi-nationals. The shift would also probably improve the quality of produce (esp. local) and accessibility in many areas.

by matheson on May 08, 2020 at 11:45AM

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Average rating: 4.8
Based on: 34 votes

Comments

  • Posted by swansonj87 May 08, 2020 at 12:11

    In general I suspect smaller businesses will be more financially vulnerable to lockdown and as such are a priority for easing restrictions. Furthermore one would hope that with reduced footfall compared to larger shops/outlets, easing of restrictions for these businesses would have less impact on the R number
  • Posted by Slaurand May 09, 2020 at 08:49

    I have reverted to going for one big shop at a retailer that has 'everything' in order to limit time out of the house. But I would prefer to go to the village and shop at each of my local shops.
  • Posted by Bonsith May 09, 2020 at 10:33

    This is important in encouraging people to continue to use local services on which they have depended entirely during this crisis. Many of us were in the habit of driving away from local areas to get to large retail parks. This has been detrimental to services in non urban areas where shops have closed as they’ve been unable to compete. Inevitably this leads to hollowing out of rural areas with fewer means of making a living. Now that we have all seen how we can work remotely, supporting businesses in out lying areas will aid the return of these communities rather than them relying solely on tourism.
  • Posted by Emax2020 May 09, 2020 at 12:31

    Good for the environment too as you don’t need to travel by car. My local Keystore has been brilliant at stocking the things the local community are looking , including more fresh fruit and veg, hand sanitizers etc. They let us know via Facebook when items come in and there are never more than three people in the shop at the one time. So much safer than supermarkets in terms of risk.
  • Posted by janetfabb May 09, 2020 at 14:28

    I think that this proposal about allowing small local businesses to re-open should include all sorts of businesses, including galleries, bookstores and other cultural entities. People need cultural stimulation as well as places to buy essentials. I am also concerned that if these sorts of businesses are not either allowed to open or supported in some other way, when this is all over, we will all be much poorer if these businesses have gone to the wall.
  • Posted by Shadikins May 10, 2020 at 14:59

    Opening up small businesses is really important especially in smaller communities. As a small business owners we are stuck, the financial implications of this virus will take a much bigger toll on our family than the health implications.
  • Posted by Homebird May 11, 2020 at 09:16

    Small businesses have stepped in to provide support to vulnerable members of the community. Their value has been demonstrated clearly here - they are flexible, adaptable, agile and within days had completely overhauled their operating models to allow them to take phone orders and payments, provide deliveries and even collaborate with other businesses to share delivery trips. This should be rewarded and supported. I'm now receiving weekly veg and butcher deliveries and have only been to a supermarket three times in two months! It's a much healthier and more sustainable way for a community to operate.
  • Posted by Woodsider May 11, 2020 at 12:25

    agree with many of comments above. Small local businesses have added hugely to social wealth of a local community during this time. They need to be supported. Lets have a high profile SHOP LOCAL ids you can campaign to help them. They are part of the vital life system of communities and this has been amply demonstrated during. the lockdown
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