Written by Kyle Boudreau, Ari Glazas And Adi Dreml-Scully
Small businesses are the economic backbone of any Democratic society. With new variants of Covid-19 coming to light every so often, businesses are constantly closing and reopening which puts strain on businesses. Kerbside pick-up and online shopping are not doable for all businesses, such as privately owned sports stores such as All-Star Sports. Manager Jason Landry says “ The online shopping is doable, but it doesn’t relate to the sales that you want”. His store has had to close down multiple times within the last two years, including last year‘s boxing day which is the biggest sales day of the year and the biggest holiday for the store to make income. As Jason’s store is a privately owned business with no online presence, All-Star Sports relies on customers being inside the store to keep their business alive. Jason’s biggest concern is his competitors’ adaptability to Covid and moving their business almost fully online. Jason Says “ Businesses like Nike or American Eagle make a large sum of their money through online shopping. “ Most purchases from our customers we’ve noticed are more impulse buys, people don’t come into our store looking to buy a certain item most of the time, people don’t know what to expect as the mall is a travel hotspot for people heading to their cottages, etc “. Losing those types of customers has cost his business thousands of dollars. Last year Toronto had the biggest decline in employment in history with over 119,000 jobs lost since businesses are closing down because they can’t sustain themselves with the COVID-19 lockdown rules. Now approaching a potential sixth wave of COVID-19 in Ontario, the worry of another potential lockdown affects Jason’s store once again. However there are two sides to these lockdowns, The Ontario medical system has been completely overwhelmed with ICU Covid patients. Nurse Emily Robertson says that she’s not sure if the healthcare system will be able to survive if there are no restrictions. Mask mandates and capacity limits were lifted earlier this month, but there are talks about them potentially coming back as Covid numbers are the most they’ve ever been according to the daily case count predictions. As Covid tests are extremely hard to come by at this point, daily case count predictions have been made through wastewater which has led to over 100,000 cases per day in Ontario. Premier Doug Ford has faced a lot of backlash from both sides of the situation. However, as of now, Ontario has no plans to bring back Mask Mandates. As things have been looking up in Ontario in terms of normality, it could be shadowing the potential and detrimental sixth wave of COVID-19. Being a small business owner in Ontario, especially in retail has been a challenge for thousands of entrepreneurs within the province. Only Time will tell the future of Covid, but as of right now we can only be optimistic about Canada’s future and the extinction of Covid-19.
Courtesy of: https://www.senecajournalism.ca/