Love Aylmer? Help flatten the curve of economic crisis
Keep the local economy going! This is the background worry on many Aylmer minds these days. Small and large businesses, families with gig-economy-earners, salaried wage-earners: everyone is wondering if the flow of money will stop for a week or a month or is this thing going to September.
Aylmer’s business community is a conscience lot. They, like their teams, have been working in crisis mode for a week at least now. For many, it is becoming a natural part of the cycle, with the same “all hands on deck” attitude seen during the floods and the tornado. Mr Lavallée, owner of Tim Hortons told the Bulletin that it feels like the 1998 ice storm, the way staff step up to help anyone who needs it. At the Bulletin, staff was released from usual duties to bag sand throughout the floods. Home Hardware owner, Mr Clement donated all the sandbags he had when the city ran out during the 2017 floods, the city councillor herself drove them down to flooding neighbourhoods. The same happens in countless businesses, businesses with crucial payrolls in coming weeks.
How does a community go about ensuring they don’t lose businesses to crisis like COVID-19? The effort and infrastructure, the passion required to first open and then to maintain a business is enormous. By many accounts, most businesses don’t have a cushion of more than a few weeks to endure a full social shut-down. Just as grocery stores ran out of toilet paper at an unprecedented rate, Aylmer needs to figure out how to avoid losing small businesses at a similar pace.
One way is to keep commitments. If a cake is ordered for a birthday that can’t happen, why not go ahead and pay for it anyway, a significant percentage at least? This general strategy in the local economy has a similar ‘flattening the curve’ effect that Aylmerites are practicing with social distancing. We are taking measures to lessen the risks, understanding that every person has a small role to play and that the whole effort falls apart if too many people just ignore best practices.
Every business in town is acutely aware of needing to be a part of getting through this COVID-19 crisis. They have plans and are open to ideas on how to provide their service while keeping the public healthy. Need something but avoid it because of exposure risk? Call the shop! Ask them for their suggestion. But keep the money flowing in local shops!