Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Mon 16 Mar 2020

To Our Regional Business Community,

Most us of are feeling very uncertain and somewhat nervous. The landscape is changing at an extremely rapid pace as public authorities work hard to put measures in place to try and stop the spread of COVID 19, as well as minimise the social and economic impacts.

This is an ever-changing situation that will affect us all, however we are all in this together. RCCIWA recommends that we all follow public authority guidelines and advice and do everything we can to ensure our regional businesses are informed and supported. We will continue to share updated information and directives via our various communication channels and encourage you to share these with your members.
Practising Good Hygiene
Wash your hands frequently with soap and water
Cover your cough/sneeze and dispose of tissues
Avoid contact with others if you are unwell
Stay Informed – Follow Public Health Advice
We strongly encourage you to check in with the following sites regularly and follow their social media pages to ensure you and your members receive the most accurate and up to date public health information and advice. Many of these sites have posters and resources you can download to share with your members directly.
Health.Gov.Au COVID-19 Health Alert 
Health.Gov.Au COVID-19 Resources 
Wa.Gov.Au COVID-19 Latest Updates
World Health Organisation COVID-19
The Premier, the Hon Mark McGowan MLA is also releasing detailed daily updates on his Facebook page which is well worth following and sharing – giving correct information on the current COVID-19 status for Western Australia.

Support for Local Businesses
There is no doubt that the economic impact is being felt, so it is more important than ever for us to drive support and business, to local businesses. All of our members are ensuring they are encouraging everyone to continue to shop local and reinforce that regional businesses are still open. We can all assist by promoting our shop local message, profiling local businesses and reaching out to our local business members to see how we can help.

The SBDC and the Federal Government have released some valuable information for small businesses and employer obligations, and CCIWA have developed a dedicated COVID-19 portal for all businesses.
Government Stimulus and Support Packages
RCCIWA will be ensuring that the real impacts of COVID 19 are shared with Government authorities to ensure that the stimulus measures that are being introduced are effective and relevant to our regional businesses. We expect stimulus measures will be ongoing and will change over the coming months. To date, both the Federal and State Government have released stimulus packages, that have support specifically for small businesses. We welcome these initiatives and encourage you to share these with your members.
Federal Government
State Government

RCCIWA recommends that our members encourage their members to talk to their accountants, bookkeepers or financial advisers about how to access the stimulus support that they are eligible for as soon as possible.
Member Event Protocols
All of our members host and deliver many events and activities, bringing numbers of people together. It’s a big part of their organisation and a key member benefit.  Whilst each of our members will decide whether to continue with an event or delay it, we recommend that our members adopt the following precautionary measures:

  • Visible signage of correct hygiene practices at events
  • Access to hand sanitiser at and during events
  • Self-assessment notices prior to all events via direct email to participants
  • Suggested protocols instead of handshaking, etc
  • Other measures as required upon advice from the Australian Government Department of Health

And if continuing with an event we recommend that you send the following disclaimer or request to all attendees:

  • If you are feeling sick, if you’re coughing or sneezing or if you’ve been in contact with anyone who has or is suspected of having the Coronavirus, then please refrain from putting other members and business community representatives in an adverse situation. 
  •  Should you be in the ‘high risk’ category as defined by the Australian Government Department of Health, please refrain from participating in our events to reduce your risk of contracting the virus.

We remind everyone to continue supporting and shopping at their local businesses. RCCIWA will continue to keep you informed and updated, and actively direct our members to follow public authority advice and guidelines. We are all in this together.
Kitty Prodonovich