The executive director of the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce is sending a call out to local residents for their feedback on how the organization can best advocate for businesses regarding the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.
“Together, we are stronger,” says Marilyne Aalhus.
“We encourage our entire business community to provide feedback so that we can continue to communicate to the Province asking for support and a clear message.”
Residents can have their opinions taken into consideration by filling out a form on the Airdrie Chamber website.
With the announcement on March 22 that the Alberta Government will not move onto step three of the COVID-19 re-opening plan, the Chamber is asking the government to better communicate with businesses on the reopening stages.
On Feb. 2, the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce sent a video and letter campaign to the Government of Alberta, in an effort to show them the faces of local businesses that are directly affected by the current COVID-19 restrictions.
On March 9, the Chamber followed up with a second letter to Premier Jason Kenney requesting a clear path forward with a defined pathway to reopen. The letter indicated that only 40 per cent of the Alberta Chambers network have confidence in the data the government is using to inform the reopen plans.
“Businesses are frustrated with the lack of response and communication we are all not getting from the government. We simply want a clear, consistent path that we can rely on,” says Aalhus.
“We are hearing everything from there is more need for funding, mental health support and overall better communication on how the Province will reopen our economy.”
According to a recent press release, the Airdrie Chamber has attended countless town halls with the premier, Minister of Health Tyler Shandro, and Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw.
“We still do not have clear answers on how they will reopen our economy,” says Aalhus.
“The Chamber continues to hear the growing frustrations from the Airdrie business community and know they are intrinsically linked to the length of this pandemic, the ever-increasing mental health and financial challenges, and the ongoing uncertainty.”
Aalhus says all suggestions are welcome on the form on the website so that the Chamber can continue to be the voice of local business during these challenging times.
Aalhus says the Chamber has already heard a number of great ideas including a postcard campaign, calls for more mental health support and ideas to help rebuild customer confidence as many are still reluctant to shop and support some of the hardest hit industries.
She adds that the suggestions will be discussed by the board to determine if there are any programs or events the Chamber can implement in the coming months as well as what additional steps they can take to have their voice heard by the government.
She adds that suggestions can be submitted anonymously through the form on the Chamber’s website. To have your voice heard, click here.