During these extraordinary times, we need the government to immediately take action to protect cafés, restaurants, pubs and the wider retail market from industry collapse. This cannot wait. We need to unify and speak as one voice and we need to act right now.
There are 3 immediate measures that we are calling on the Federal Government to support:
(1) Facilitate rental breaks:
Emergency measures must be taken to change retail leases so that rents are paid 30 days from the end of the month, rather than on the 1st of each month in advance, as is now typical.
This measure will effectively delay rental payments by 60 days. Landlords can then negotiate with the banks to ensure there are delayed payments.
Further to this measure, we encourage all tenants to reach out to their landlords to negotiate rental relief at this difficult time. We will lobby the Prime Minister and Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business to ensure that banks are flexible when landlords/mortgagees come forward with these special requests.
(2) Keep business premises safe / enforce “Force Majeure” clauses:
For businesses needing to close due to significantly reduced custom or government orders, no landlord should be able to lock tenants out of their retail premises.
(3) Support employers to support employees:
Based on previous payroll, a 75% weekly cash injection to cover wages for those staff who will otherwise be laid off.
We must protect our work force so that we have a work force ready on N-Day (Normal Day).
There will be an N-Day but we need to make smart choices now to ensure that we have workplaces and employees to come back to.
These are the 3 key measures we need to act upon right now and by standing as one united voice, when more measures are required, as an industry we can speak together.
We have started an Instagram page - AustralianRetailVoice, we invite you to join us there.
If you have any questions, contributions or concerns please contact us at:
Lloyd Smith, Spokesperson