House debates

Thursday, 14 May 2020

Statements by Members

JobKeeper Payment

1:41 pm

Photo of Dave SharmaDave Sharma (Wentworth, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

The government's JobKeeper package has provided a lifeline for thousands of businesses across Australia and, at the latest count, some six million Australians. JobKeeper is helping to maintain the connection between businesses and their staff and is assisting businesses to stay afloat financially, cushioning the economic impact of the crisis and facilitating a faster economic recovery as public health controls are eased.

In my own electorate of Wentworth, many small businesses have been supported by JobKeeper, and I want to single out one in particular. When we announced JobKeeper on 30 March, I was in touch with James Meek, one of the owners of the Bennett Street and Blair Street dairies, two local cafes in Bondi. James told me back then on 30 March that JobKeeper had given him the confidence to reopen his business, which he'd shuttered just a few days earlier. He started to sell takeaway coffees and, as a bit of an experiment, cookie dough, which he'd previously been using to bake cookies in his cafes. I spoke to James again today and he told me his cookie dough sales were now beginning to dwarf his earlier cafe business. The cookie dough business has taken off, tapping into all those people wanting to bake at home. Since that time, the Bondi Dairy has delivered more than 1,000 kilograms of cookie dough all across Sydney.

JobKeeper had allowed James to keep on all his workers and retool his business, and it gave him the confidence to try something new. I know a lot of businesses are doing it tough out there right now and many have not been as fortunate as the Bondi Dairy and James. We will continue to stand alongside all these businesses. (Time expired)