As lockdowns drag on, businesses are pushed to the brink

With the positive distraction of the Olympics now gone, a lot of people I’ve spoken to are finding it really tough to stay upbeat, with yet another lockdown extension announced today in Victoria, and no end in sight to the crisis in Sydney.

The major issue most businesses are facing is the lack of government support. Of course, there are some government grants available to businesses in certain sectors, but that doesn’t help the vast majority of businesses, who struggle more and more with every day in lockdown.

Some business owners I’ve spoken with have been left with no choice but to ask employees to take whatever leave they have available to them so they can stay in touch while they ride out the COVID wave.

Others I’ve heard of are offering their employees leave without pay, given they have no work for them now, but they know they’ll need them back once the lockdown lifts.

Some staff are so lacking in motivation and struggling with mental health they’re taking all their sick leave voluntarily, just to sit around and do nothing.

The situation is dire.

One major issue is that despite government grants being available, not many have actually been paid. I know of businesses where up to three rounds of grants have been approved, but they haven’t seen the money yet, which leaves them either dipping into their cash reserves even further, or relying on going deeper into debt to bridge the gap.

For those in lockdown in Victoria, the opportunity to apply for the grant from our previous lock-down (the July one, not this current one) closes this Friday.

Despite the limited government assistance, there are some grants available in certain circumstances, so I encourage you to check out the various state government links to see what you might be eligible for: