It is apparent from weak answers in State Parliament that Small Business Minister Jaala Pulford has not engaged with or met small businesses in the events sector.
Given the great significance for the Victorian economy of the events sector and the sector’s large number of small businesses and jobs, she should have.
It is not enough to pass responsibility for the viability and future of small businesses to another minister.
The pathetic answers in the Upper House shows she is a minister who is not up to the job. Small businesses need a strong advocate. Given its many small businesses, the events sector needs better than Jaala Pulford.
The Liberal Nationals strongly support the events industry, noting that small community events, business events, public events and festivals contribute to the unique character of Victorian life and are significant employers.
We believethe Andrews Labor Government must ensure that funding support is made available for all businesses in the events industry, including revising the eligibility for assistance from the Business Support Fund and ensuring that sole traders are included.
The Andrews Labor Government has no plan to assist small businesses or events. A proactive plan is needed to ensure the events industry is up and running as soon as it is safe to do so. This will require tens of millions of dollars of support that needs to be available as soon as the current lockdown is lifted.
The events industry must be supported by the State Government to rebuild and create jobs again, and to continue its role as a key thread in our community’s social fabric.