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Level 4 extension devastating for Auckland retailers - Retail NZ

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Retail NZ says that the extension to the Level 4 lockdown in the Auckland region is devastating news for retailers and other businesses trying to survive the COVID-19 outbreak.

"While it is important for the Government to manage the current health crisis, the extension to the Lockdown is hugely difficult for businesses, and may be a fatal blow for some," Greg Harford, Retail NZ Chief Executive, said today. "What was meant to be a short, sharp, three-day lockdown is now moving into its fourth week. While the Government has provided some support via the Wage Subsidy and the Resurgence Support Payment, the reality is that this support is limited and will not be enough to stop businesses going to the wall.

"It’s more important than ever that the Government steps up with additional support to help cover the fixed costs of running a business, including rents and utilities, as well as wages. It’s also important that the Government enables businesses to trade, where they can do safely. This includes retailers and manufacturers producing goods that are critical for businesses and consumers in the Level 2 parts of the country. There are significant issues in the supply chain and some stores are running short of goods that are unable to be produced under Level 4 restrictions.

At the same time, Retail NZ understands that this is a very challenging time for Aucklanders, and is asking everyone to remain calm, shop normally, wear masks, and be nice to retail workers. "Retail NZ has seen a big upsurge in unpleasantness, aggression and abuse towards retail staff as the pandemic wears on, and I’m calling on everyone to shop nicely when they get out and about to the limited number of stores able to offer essential goods throughout the Auckland region. Everyone who works in retail is doing their best to get goods to customers as best they can, so please be understanding if there are queues or limits on some products.

"It’s never acceptable to harass or abuse those working in retail, which is why Retail NZ has launched a social media campaign encouraging Kiwis to wear masks while out shopping, without taking out their frustrations on retail workers".

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