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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 08 Hansard (Wednesday, 4 August 2021) . . Page.. 2314 ..

support behind the bush fair—Territory Tanks and Plumbing, Synergies Four Service, Earth Moving Creations and Aquatic Achievers swim school, just to name a few. I am incredibly impressed by small businesses who, in these trying times, continue to take their social contract so seriously and put up their hand to support community initiatives. I encourage Canberrans to engage with and spend their hard-earned money in businesses that have a proven track record of giving back to this local community.

So many creative, progressive, entrepreneurial Canberrans have created ways to support small business and stimulate our economy without excess consumerism, which we know has an impact on our planet. In collaboration with the Mura Lanyon Youth and Community Centre and the YWCA, Sea Change recently hosted a sustainable south side upcycling market. I was pleased to attend these markets last week and I picked up some homemade goodies and hearty homemade soup from the Gordon community centre. I have come to rely on the good folk of Tuggeranong to help me balance out my otherwise indulgent diet.

To end, I thank our health minister and congratulate all Canberrans on yet another donut day. Keeping our communities COVID free has meant that we have avoided the worst of the economic outcomes and job losses that others around the country are currently experiencing. But more importantly, we have kept our community safe. The exceptional vaccine take-up and rollout in this city is testament to our healthcare workers and health service planning as well as our community sense of shared responsibility. It is important that we remember that behind these economic issues there is a significant health crisis unfolding not far from our border, where just today someone in their 20s has lost their battle with COVID-19.

Failing to treat the health crisis extremely seriously and quickly leads us to the worst situations like those that are unfolding in New South Wales. This lockdown is necessary to protect the health of people who live in Sydney, and we will always support a health-first approach to this crisis.

Managing the impact on us of Sydney’s delayed lockdown involves careful analysis and planning, strong communication and relationships with business, and targeted advocacy to the commonwealth. The ACT Greens support Minister Cheyne’s amendment, and we encourage Ms Castley, as a strong small business spokesperson in this place, to consider writing a not dissimilar letter to her federal counterparts.

MS CLAY (Ginninderra) (3.36): COVID-19 had a devastating impact on hospitality and our night-time economy, but let us not forget the industry that goes hand in hand with hospitality, and that is the arts sector. The arts sector includes all performers: our dancers, our singers, our DJs, our poets and our musos. Any place we go for the atmosphere—whether it is a restaurant with a live jazz band, a pub with a live rock band or a poetry slam at Smiths—is made better by the arts. Art makes hospitality better. The two are intertwined and we need to support them both.

I love the arts. I come from a family of musicians, painters and writers. I understand how important the arts are to our community wellbeing. I also know how hard it is to make a living—or to make any money at all!—from highly skilled and professional arts practice.

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