Kia ora koutou,
This week has been punctuated by three significant announcements, along with what is now the daily ritual of the 1pm and 3pm government briefings. We’ve seen positive signs that our approach to eliminating the virus is reaping results, but strong words of caution against complacency accompany these. We’ve had further support announced for our business community, along with getting a slightly clearer understanding of what life might be like when we do move to Alert Level 3, and while we don’t have a date for that yet, lets take this time to get prepared.
While we can’t burst our bubbles just yet, Level 3 does mean we can make them a little bit bigger; welcome news I’m sure you’ll agree. For our businesses without a customer facing element, like construction or forestry, they can open up under strict health and safety and physical distancing rules while business that are accessed by the public such as retail, hardware stores and restaurants can open but only for online or phone purchases and contactless delivery or click and collect.
It’s definitely more of an ultra-marathon than a 100m sprint we have in front of us, but we are now finally getting some clarity on what these levels mean for our community, and what we have to prepare for. Whether or not it will be quick enough to provide some real relief for those businesses that are under significant financial pressure as we head into week four of lockdown remains to be seen.
It’s important for us all to draw strength from the knowledge that our region is in good shape, our diverse economy provides a strong platform to weather this storm, and we know it will pass. Innovation, resilience and creativity are just some of the strengths of our community, and it is these that will help us come through this stronger, together.
Do remember that we have support available if you are in need of help; from free access to a business mentor, assistance in accessing support specific to your individual business needs, through to help in navigating the central government assistance that is available to you.
Kia haumaru te noho, kia kaha tātou,