Services to support small business will receive a cash injection in the 2022-23 NSW Budget.
Minister for Small Business Eleni Petinos said as a key provider of goods, services, and jobs, small business is at the heart of local communities, and that this funding from the NSW Government is vital.
“The number of small businesses in NSW grew by four per cent last year to almost 800,000 and about 98 per cent of all businesses in NSW, so it is critical to the economy and our communities that they have strong support,” Ms Petinos said.
The NSW Small Business Commission will receive $9.5 million over the forward estimates to boost mediation and support services for small businesses. The additional recurrent funding would provide ongoing support for small businesses as they recover from COVID-19.
“In 2021 the Commission received a record 47,500 enquiries and over 2,300 applications for mediation, helping thousands of small businesses resolve lease issues and negotiate rent deferrals under the COVID regulations.
“Thanks to the work of the Small Business Commission about 90 per cent of disputes are able to be resolved without the cost of going to court.”
Additionally, the Business Connect program will receive a further $5 million over the next three years to provide dedicated services to women-led small businesses.
“Since 2017, Business Connect has already helped more than 44,000 small businesses by providing them with personalised and tailored support to help them to start, adapt and grow their operations.”
“We’re expanding this program to upskill these leaders with the tools they want, whether it be marketing, social media, business planning, and digital literacy.”
Businesses across the State will be also supported to stop sexual harassment in the workplace, following the launch of a SafeWork NSW Respect at Work Taskforce.
The taskforce will receive $9.7 million over four years to deliver on Kate Jenkins’ Respect at Work Report by ensuring employers comply with their duty under Work Health and Safety laws to prevent sexual harassment at work.
“Sexual harassment is not just a cultural problem, it is also an economic problem given lost productivity, staff turnover and other associated impacts.
“With almost 40 per cent of women having been sexually harassed at work in the past five years, the taskforce will develop a suite of resources and target high-risk industries and workplaces where gender-based harassment is prevalent.
“This investment will provide employers, including small businesses who may need the extra support, with best-practice guidance on ways to create workplaces that are free from sexual harassment.”
For more information on the Small Business Commission, please visit: smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au
For more information on Business Connect, please visit: nsw.gov.au/working-and-business/about-business-connect
For more information on the SafeWork NSW Respect at Work taskforce, please visit: safework.nsw.gov.au/compliance-and-prosecutions/respect-taskforce
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