House debates

Monday, 15 June 2020

Statements by Members

Paterson Electorate: Small Business

4:18 pm

Photo of Meryl SwansonMeryl Swanson (Paterson, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

Many small mum-and-dad businesses in my electorate are really suffering and need support at the moment. The issues that they're facing are not difficult issues, but they're ones that they wish this present government could have helped them with. This is what they've told me from my small-business survey. A disability support provider who works with people with autism told me that they did not have the cash flow to pay casual employees for the six to eight weeks they had to wait to be reimbursed by the ATO. Their profit margins are already incredibly slim as they are dictated by the NDIS, and this poorly executed government policy made it really difficult for them. As a partnership business, a discount variety store in my electorate had no help. They had to hand the keys to their business back after all the hours working in that little business. They wished that the government would support small business with no employees, not only the medium and large companies. A husband-and-wife delivery business—another business with no employees—said they felt that businesses like theirs were being disregarded. I also heard from a travel tour company in what is a very stressed tourism industry at the moment. Their business was caught between the stages of transiting from a partnership to a company. They said that they had missed out on many government grants but still had to pay the overheads similar to those paid by other companies. I implore this government to listen to these small-business owners from my electorate and take action, because they are the key to business in Australia.