14 September 2020


Business wouldn't worry about missing out on support if restrictions were eased now

Liberal Democrats Member for Northern Victoria Tim Quilty says the Victorian Government is continuing to ignore small business.

After Sunday’s announcement of a $3 billion support package for businesses struggling through COVID-19 restrictions, Mr Quilty said Premier Daniel Andrews has once more ignored sole traders.

“Numerous business owners have contacted me to ask what sort of assistance is available to them, and the response has consistently been ‘if you don’t employ people, you don’t qualify’, and that has not changed,” Mr Quilty said.

“Many small businesses are on the verge of collapse because their customer base has evaporated thanks to the Victorian Government’s restrictions.

“Despite the song and dance of Mr Andrews’s support package, once again it’s the sole traders, the mum and dad business owners, who get left out in the cold.

“One of the criteria for a grant of $10,000 to $20,000 is that the business must employ people. This will exclude every one or two-person operations in Victoria.”

Mr Quilty said that businesses would not need support if the Victorian Government was more sensible in its approach to coronavirus.

“The Government thinks they can just shut down the economy, causing massive damage, and then wave a wand and make it all better with their magical ‘packages’. The real world doesn’t work that way, but nobody in this Government has ever had a job in the private sector, so how would they know?” Mr Quilty said.

“We have seen numerous studies which point out the damaging effects of restrictions, and they go way beyond economic harm.

“Our social fabric is being corroded because of laws preventing us from meeting friends, going out for entertainment or even taking weekend breaks.

“I’ve seen many comments online which say saving even one life is far more important than any amount of lost personal freedoms, but these comments portray a huge ignorance of wellbeing, education needs and mental health.

“These restrictions in regional Victoria must end now – we have proven we are not affected by any COVID-19 cases and we should be allowed to get on with returning to a normal life.

“If Mr Andrews took his knee off our necks, we would not need his handouts.”

For more information, contact Graham Springett | 0408 208819