GEORGE POLITICAL NEWS - On 1 June 2020, numerous small businesses across the country breathed a sigh of relief when lockdown restrictions eased as the country moved to Alert Level 3. In essence, businesses were now able to open their doors again, but more importantly, they were able to generate income and sustain themselves.
This was however not the case for small businesses operating in the Personal Care Services industry (PCS industry), as their doors continue to remain closed, given that they are prohibited from operating under the current Alert Level 3 of the lockdown.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) in George fully supports yesterday’s announcement by our Shadow Minister for Trade and Industry, Dean MacPherson MP, that the DA has filed an urgent application in the Western Cape High Court, seeking to declare the prohibition on the PCS industry unlawful, invalid and unconstitutional.
The PCS industry includes, amongst others, hairdressers, barbers, tattoo artists, beauty therapists, nail technicians, somatologists and cosmetologists, all of whom have been unable to lawfully operate and generate an income since the commencement of the lockdown on 27 March 2020.
The George Municipality alone has approximately 160 small businesses in the PCS industry. As such, the continued prohibition on small businesses in the PCS industry is depriving the owners of these businesses, and their employees, from earning a livelihood. In so doing, it invariably deprives municipalities the size of George from enjoying the socio-economic benefits provided by the operation of such small businesses.
Small businesses, right across the board, are critical contributors to the local economy of municipalities such as George in that they, amongst other things, create employment for local communities, support neighbourhoods and communities, whilst fostering the local economy.
The DA in the George is also concerned about the continued prohibition on small businesses that are outside of the PCS industry, but similarly to the PCS industry are also prohibited from operating under Alert Level 3. These include restaurants, bars, taverns, etc.
The DA would like to assure these businesses and others who remain closed, that we remain steadfast in our commitment to ensure the re-opening of the economy as a whole, and not just pockets or segments of it, subject to, of course, the necessary health and safety protocols being put in place.
The DA in George further implores community members to continue supporting all the small businesses in their communities that are currently operating under Alert Level 3 of the lockdown, by shopping local, eating local, spending local and enjoying all things local!
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