March 25, 2020: The streets of downtown Victoria are quieter than usual in the wake of physical isolation mandates from the provincial and federal governments due to COVID-19. (Arnold Lim / Black Press Media)

South Island leaders form taskforce to address economic crisis amidst COVID-19

Rising Economy Taskforce to address economic crisis and resiliency

South Island leaders from local government, businesses, institutions and nonprofits are coming together to address the ongoing major economic downturn in the region.

The Rising Economy Taskforce, convened by the South Island Prosperity Partnership (SIPP), was created to develop a strong and coordinated region-wide response to the economic crisis brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The South Island Prosperity Partnership is an alliance of more than 60 public and private sector partners in Greater Victoria. In a statement, the partnership said it views a multi-stakeholder approach as “essential to developing a coordinated economic recovery strategy.” The approach is also helpful to move forward plans to create economic resiliency in the region as a precaution against future crises.

According to Emilie de Rosenroll, SIPP chief official, the task force will focus on supporting relief and recovery efforts and will explore what is needed for longer-term economic resilience.

READ ALSO: Economic impact of COVID-19 on Victoria’s tourism industry will be ‘devastating,’ experts say

“While things may still get worse before they get better, our region must start planning immediately if we want to see the vibrancy return to our economy,” de Rosenroll said in a statement. “The south Island is collaborative – as a result, we can come together to ensure that when the recovery begins, we rebound as quickly as possible. By coming together now, we can use this crisis as a platform for future prosperity.”

The task force will provide guidance and gather input to inform a recovery strategy with some preliminary actions such as conducting a business impact assessment and evaluating demand for a business recovery centre. Impact on key economic assets will also be measured. Additionally, the task force will assess employment issues and explore business transitions and new emerging opportunities.

Members of the task force include leaders from Thrifty Foods, Accent Inns, Wilson Group, the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, Destination Greater Victoria, the Canadian Migration Institute, Jawl Properties, the University of Victoria, Shop Local YYJ, the Westshore Chamber of Commerce, the Victoria Foundation, Vancity, Esri Canada and MNP.

READ ALSO: Stats Canada expects COVID-19 to impact inflation

Other leaders include Sidney Mayor Cliff McNeil-Smith, Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps, entrepreneur Rasool Rayani, CRD Board Chair Colin Plant, Esquimalt-Metchosin MLA Mitzi Dean, Colwood Coun. Doug Kobayashi, Saanich Coun. Zac de Vries and Esquimalt Coun. Ken Armour.

Thrifty Foods vice president of operations Ralf Mundel said the task force is a “crucial initiative.”

“We know the Rising Economy Taskforce will be effective and engaging as we create relief, recovery and resilience in our new economy,” Mundel said.

shalu.mehta@blackpress.ca


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Coronaviruseconomy

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Kildonan mansion at 931 Foul Bay Rd. is part of the Oak Bay heritage registry. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Oak Bay declines Kildonan House permissive tax exemption

Council briefs include new transformer for Oak Bay Rec., strata policy

A mature Garry oak fell onto Richmond Road on Oct. 13 near Camosun College Lansdowne campus. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)
Garry oak crashes down onto Richmond Road

Saanich responded to 59 tree-related calls

A woman was injured cycling, prompting road closures in Oak Bay on Oct. 16. (Twitter/Ray Bernoties)
‘Erratic’ cyclists potential cause of rider injured in Oak Bay

Female cyclist was reportedly injured at Hampshire Road and Bowker Creek Avenue

The Better Business Bureau is warning people of scammers posing as Amazon customer support. (AP File Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Watch out for Amazon imposters, says scam expert

Better Business Bureau is warning of a rise in Amazon scammers as people online shop more

A 23-foot sailboat that broke free from its anchor was smashed against Cattle Point during the early October south-easterly storms. (Ron Geezin Photo)
Storm-smashed boat pulled off rocks of Cattle Point in Oak Bay

Sailboat a casualty of last week’s big storms

Conservative member of Parliament Pierre Poilievre speaks during a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on October 19, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Liberals say Tory effort to set up COVID-19 committee will be a confidence matter

The Tories were originally proposing an ‘anticorruption’ committee

Advance polls are open from Oct. 15 to 21 with election day on Oct. 24. (Black Press Media file photo)
A injection kit is seen inside the newly opened Fraser Health supervised consumption site is pictured in Surrey, B.C., Tuesday, June 6, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. records 127 fatal overdoses in September, roughly 4 each day

Vancouver, Surrey and Victoria continued to see the highest numbers of overdoses

Investigators work at the Sagmoen farm in Silver Creek. - Image credit: Observer file photo.
Sex workers allegedly called to farm of Okanagan man convicted of assault, RCMP investigating

Curtis Sagmoen, convicted in relation to assault of sex trade workers, is prohibited from soliciting escorts

(Black Press Media files)
Early voters more likely to favour NDP, but overall B.C. election is tightening: poll

According to Elections BC, 383,477 people cast a ballot during advanced voting days

(Pixabay)
Wave of racist emails ‘unleashed’ on B.C. researchers investigating racism in health care

The team has received close to 600 calls and emails since the investigation started in July

A passer-by walks past a COVID-19 testing clinic in Montreal, Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canada ‘yet to see’ deaths due to recent COVID surge as cases hit 200,000

Much of the increase in case numbers can be attributed to Ontario and Quebec

Police confirm human remains were found in a recycling bin in Vancouver on Oct. 18, 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)
Human remains found in recycling bin floating near Vancouver beach

Police asking nearby residents to see if their recycling bin has gone missing

(File photo)
RCMP: Two men face charges in reported Parksville fatal hit-and-run

Investigation into man’s death began in August of 2019

Most Read