Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Fri 19 Jun 2020

Good Morning,

I hope you are well today. Last Thursday RCCIWA participated as a member of the State Recovery Advisory Group for the inaugural workshop meeting with 25 other representatives from industry and community associations and bodies. The Premier hosted the meeting and we were also joined by several Ministers, Directors General, and key senior public sector personnel. The key objectives for the five-hour workshop was for the 26 stakeholders to provide feedback and comment on the Draft Impact Statement and to assist the Government with the development of their State Recovery Plan. It was an important and very constructive meeting and RCCIWA ensured that the views of, and impact felt by our regional business communities were contributed well. For more information about the State Recovery Advisory Group and the Plan for Recovery read here.

We continue to be impressed by the way our members are working harder than ever to provide support, help and advice for their business community. Their collaborative approaches to providing genuine support, the partnerships that have been formed,  the innovative activities and events they are delivering, and the way they have adapted and stepped up so quickly is making a positive difference to businesses throughout Regional WA. We have included a few examples of the great work our members are doing.

East Kimberley CCI
Small Business Awards

The East Kimberley CCI were able to still hold their East Kimberley Small Business Awards. They had to get creative being unable to hold a traditional awards night. They asked all their winners to come to a location as sponsor photos were required for their submissions. During this photo shoot they were presented with their awards! The chamber sent out a special edition members email with write up, pictures of our winners and awards, did a Facebook post, and a double page spread in The Kimberley Echo. The response was unbelievably positive after such a gloomy time, resulting in the largest reach ever on their Facebook page, with all participating businesses posting to their own business pages.

Wheatbelt Business Network
Wheatbelt Jobs

The Wheatbelt Business Network have just this last week launched Wheatbelt Jobs which is a website for Wheatbelt employers to promote their job vacancies and for jobseekers to apply. Businesses can now advertise their jobs for FREE on the website - The WBN developed the website in response to member's feedback on the needs for the region.






Capel Chamber of Commerce
Postcard Project

Another great initiative from the Capel Chamber was the Postcard Project launched in April. Acting on local business feedback that visitors could purchase no souvenirs in town as a reminder of their visit it was suggested Capel postcards would sell well. The Chamber lead the project by having a photo competition. 100 photos were submitted from which they chose photos for 4 postcards. 
The end result is a set of postcards that, thanks to the virus lockdown, initially sold only to locals. But with tourist numbers now on the rise, they're confident the postcards will be a popular purchase by visitors. The chamber covered the initial run of 1000 postcards of which half have already sold so a second print run is likely later in the year.

Denmark Chamber of Commerce
Food and Drinks Guide

The initiative that the Denmark Chamber has received great feedback on from  both business and community is their Food and Drinks Guide. It’s updated regularly and has helped connect both the Denmark community and tourists to local take away and dine in food and beverage establishments. Before the June long weekend they created an on-line and printed campaign to help connect tourists to our local business community. The poster to the left was printed and placed in the store windows and notice boards around town so visitors and locals alike could easily determine which businesses were open for business.







iThink WA
Have your say on our State's Recovery

As part of the recovery planning from the COVID-19 pandemic, iThink are seeking your ideas, big and small, on how to get our State back on its feet. The Government has already put in place many initiatives, programs and stimulus measures in response to the pandemic and for early recovery. Now is your opportunity to let them  know what you think are the key impacts, and have your say on the actions and priorities for recovery through the partnership of government, business, industry, trade unions, not for profits, local governments, the public sector and individuals in our community.

They encourage you to take a look at the challenges and submit your ideas to support Western Australia’s recovery here. Challenges are currently open and will close next Friday 26 June 2020.

New Commercial Tenancy Legislative Changes
The WA Government has passed a new law to help commercial tenants and landlords reach agreements about rent during the COVID-19 pandemic. The law was passed in two parts:

  • Part One: Commercial Tenancies (COVID-19 Response) Act 2020 (21 April 2020)
  • Part Two: WA Code of Conduct (29 May 2020)

These two parts of the law work together to ensure businesses survive the economic downturn associated with the pandemic. They implement the key principles of a national code released by the National Cabinet in April. They specify the actions small business tenants and landlords can take in regard to commercial tenancies during and following the crisis, and how they should negotiate an agreement.

For more information, visit here.  Remember, if your rent relief negotiations don’t result in an agreement, you can turn to the SBDC for free support. 

RCCIWA Impact Survey 5 Now Open
Closes Friday June 26th

Our fifth COVID-19 Regional Impact Survey  is now open. We will continue conducting this survey every 3 to 4 weeks so we can gain a continuing understanding of the economic impacts of COVID 19 on our regional businesses. By having this ongoing timely data, we are able to gauge the changing impacts on our regional businesses as well as identify issues not being addressed. We are sharing the data collected with government departments and agencies from all three tiers, and the information is being utilised to help form polices and actions to minimise the negative economic impact this pandemic is having. The survey results and data collected is being widely distributed and referred to. Please continue to share and encourage your members to complete this survey, even if they have completed a previous one – they are being listened to and their views do matter.  We now have over 140 different Government contacts and departments who are requesting this data and it is being referred to widely. Survey 2 and Survey 3  and Survey 4 reports here for your information.

RCCIWA Skills and Workforce Training Survey Report
The Dept of Training and Workforce Development are conducting an urgent review of Skills Training and Workforce Development in response to COVID 19. We have been directly providing feedback to DTWD and the regional TAFE’s. RCCIWA put together this survey to find out directly from our members and as many regional businesses as possible to ensure we can continue to provide the most relevant information to assist in the shaping of training and workforce development in regional WA. Thank you for everyone who contributed to this survey – please find the report here. The survey was conducted in the second week of June 2020 and the information has been send to DTWD to assist them with their review.

Western Australian Regional Achievement and Community Awards Now Open
The Western Australian Regional Achievement and Community Awards are designed to encourage, acknowledge and reward the valuable contributions individuals, communities and businesses are making throughout regional and rural Western Australia.  Do you know an individual, group, business or organisation who deserves to be recognised? There are many categories to chose from and we know there are just so many regional superstars who deserve a nomination. Category winners will be receive a share in amazing prizes and a magnificent trophy. Plus, the awards organisers will send out a media release to each of the nominee’s local papers encouraging them to write a story, and every nominee will receive a certificate of achievement. To find out more about the Awards please see their website. 
Nominations close Friday 7th August 2020.

All the best for a great weekend – we hope you are able to take the opportunity to shop local somewhere in Regional WA or even have a wander out yonder!

Kind Regards
Kitty Prodonovich