Small businesses are taking great strain as consumers pull back. Understandably, during the Covid-19 pandemic consumers fear infecting others and becoming infected by being in public places including shops. But unfortunately, most small business don’t have the capacity to withstand the lack of daily transactions. In a country in which over half its population live in poverty, we can’t allow businesses to fold and for workers to lose their livelihoods.
We call on government to subsidise the wages of workers in small businesses. The South African government already does this for young workers who earn less than R80000 a year, and we should extend this to everyone employed by small business*. This will help with cash flow and reduce the risk of job losses.
We are motivated by the work we do at Twyg. We support creatives practicing the circular economy in our work to achieve a sustainable world. We focus on achieving the SDG12, responsible consumption and production patterns. While we wait out this pandemic, we want to ensure that all businesses, including the ones practicing the principles we want to foster, survive these difficult times. We all are in this together.
*A small business employs 200 people or fewer, or has an annual revenue of less than R10 million.
Picture credit: Supplied by @thehatfactoryct