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You can make a difference - shop local

THE shop local message is not a new one, but it is one of the most meaningful and impactful things we can do for our community in these difficult times.

It has never been a more critical time to invest in and support our local businesses.

It is heartbreaking to see how many businesses have been forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Though health and safety must be the priority at this time, we cannot ignore how difficult it is for business owners and employees for whom those health and safety measures have ultimately meant the end of trade and the ability to earn a living.

These people will need our support as they navigate the way forward, and I sincerely hope that many of them are able to come back from this and regain their important place in our communities once again.

For those businesses that have been able to remain operating at this time, many have had to become innovative with their service delivery to ensure health and safety are maintained.

We’ve seen many local businesses transition to takeaway or home delivery options, contactless payments, or set up online stores to ensure customers can continue to get what they need while adhering to social distancing rules.

These businesses are working for us at an unprecedented time in our lives, and it is vital we show them support and keep our economy going – doing that will help protect the livelihoods of the people behind these businesses, and in turn sustain our communities.

Emma Kealy MP

The Nationals Member for Lowan