A level playing field for small retail business

One of the great features of a clean, green, compact city is shopping streets lined with small retail businesses and local restaurants. These shopping streets keep the community vibrant, create good careers and allow residents to meet their needs by foot, on bicycle, and by public transit. Such streets are one of the things I love about University Rosedale. Without them, more people will be forced into driving to big box stores.

Small retail businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic, but they are suffering even more because of unfair rules set by the Ford government. For example, since Mr. Ford’s private chat with a big shot at Walmart, he has allowed big box stores to sell nonessential goods to anyone, in person, (as long as they sell some essentials too) while forcing small shops that sell the very same goods to close (curbside only). And why is there no support for local ordering and delivery? How many small retailers will be able to withstand more months of lockdown under rules like this? (We’ll look, at another time, at how much the Ford government mishandling of the pandemic has increased social and economic disruption.)

It’s going to take a huge amount of effort, and considerable time, to recover from the pandemic.

However, this unfair rule, and similarly destructive Ford policies, could be changed quickly. That’s why we have launched the Level Playing Field petition. Small retail businesses need our help now. Please sign the petition and tell your friends about it.

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