TORONTO – A survey conducted from December 4 – 7 by Maru/Matchbox on behalf of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) has found that majority of Canadian consumers want local retailers to remain open. Ninety-three percent (93%) of Canadians believe that small retailers should be allowed to open at a limited in-store capacity.
The survey has also found that:
- Seventy-two percent (72%) of Canadians feel safer shopping at small local businesses with limited capacity than a big box store.
- Eighty-seven (87%) of Canadians find that the different measures in place for small in-store retailers versus big box stores are unfair.
- While 78% surveyed believe that big box stores should not sell similar items of small retailers who are closed for in-store shopping.
Currently, Ontario and Manitoba are the only provinces with strict restrictions in specific regions on small in-store businesses. Dan Kelly, President at CFIB states “To date, no other province has implemented Ontario’s bizarre rule to shut tight small retailers who may have a few in-store customers per day while allowing lines to grow at big box stores selling similar goods. While Manitoba’s rules are equally restrictive on small firms, they are at least fair as big box stores are also prohibited from selling non-essential goods.”
“It makes no sense at all to close small businesses that are deemed non-essential to in-store shopping while pushing crowds to big box stores who are permitted to sell the same merchandise, like Ontario has done in Toronto and Peel,” Kelly notes. “If reducing time spent indoors in crowds is the objective, consumers understand that shopping in neighbourhood small businesses is a better choice.”
CFIB would like to see Ontario take a different strategy to help small business survive into 2021. Read the full press release HERE.