Chambers of commerce in the Moreton Bay Region are cautiously welcoming the State Government’s decision yesterday to end the three-day COVID-19 lockdown.
The move means masks must still be worn at indoor venues, such as shopping centres and supermarkets and there are caps on the number of people at gatherings and venues.
But Redcliffe Peninsula Chamber of Commerce president Brad Flynn says: “Hopefully, it’s a short-term pain for long-term gain.
“I’m not fully across all the details yet, but I think this decision will have an impact. It may be inconvenient, but I think Redcliffe should be able to deal with it.”
Commerce and Industry Redcliffe Peninsula president Nick Tzimas backs the Queensland Government’s decision.
“Yes, we support it,” he says, “and by moving fast it is helping us get back to where we were before. It is a good outcome which will help us get back to being productive again.”
Pilpel Restaurant at Redcliffe was very ‘productive’ in the three-day lockdown, reporting “massive support” for its takeaway service which resulted in it running out of boxes.
Pine Rivers Chamber of Commerce treasurer and owner of The Coffee Club Strathpine Craig Pratt believes businesses will adapt to the new measures.
However, he says the cap on numbers at gatherings and venues may impact some sectors.
The Hills and Districts Chamber of Commerce president Mary Di Marco says: “I believe everyone is thinking of the health issue and working towards not going into the situation which Victoria faced last year.
“As a result, they are pleased to hear we can resume ‘normal or the new normal’ and will work towards doing the right thing for the benefit of everyone.”
But Mary warns: “If there are more lockdowns over coming months, small business owners will be very concerned about their viability.”
She says the impact of the weekend lockdown was mixed. A coffee shop had rebuilt business over Christmas and was ready for a busy weekend with more staff, longer opening hours and plenty of perishables … only to be reduced to takeaways.
Other eateries are also concerned with JobKeeper ending in March, says Mary, but real estate agents worked around the short notice lockdown, rearranging inspections.
As businesses across the Moreton Bay Region return to ‘normal’ trading, it’s more important than ever to support them by shopping, entertaining and eating locally. It’s also vital to support local trades and services.