The Free Press Editorial
By Dave Hamilton
Shop local has been a contentious issue over the past few years with many locals cross border shopping to buy products they can get in our community. There are so many gimmicks out there to shop local, it’s becoming like the diet phase.
The latest one to come to our area is the Ten Percent Shift, which basically means to make a conscious effort to make ten percent of your household spending locally. The economic multiplier from doing this is astronomical and keeps profits and jobs in our community.
The Free Press praises those who support local shopping, including not only residents who choose to spend locally, but also local merchants and organisations who promote the benefits. Currently in Fernie, Chantel Souliere, owner of Freyja Lifestyle Clothing, and Sarah Parry, Fernie Chamber of Commerce Manager, are promoting a Black Friday event on November 23 to encourage locals to stay in town to do their Christmas shopping. This comes off the heels of a very successful downtown social series, which was geared to keep locals and tourists shopping every Sunday, all summer long.
Faye Sigurdson, owner of Hair Eloquence in Elkford and Board Member of the Elkford Chamber of Commerce, is also in the infant stage of developing a shop local program, which will be rolled out in the coming weeks. The Free Press has also started its own shop local campaign, with a long term Elk Valley icon telling us every week why they shop local.
Last week we had Fernie Mayor Mary Giuliano explain why she shops locally, and be sure to check out page four in this week’s Free Press for Bonny McLardy, who has worked at The Free Press for over 33 years, and the reasons she prefers to shop local.
The Free Press encourages locals to shop with our merchants as much as possible as it brings many benefits including the obvious, more money staying in our community, more jobs being created, new business start ups. Not to mention a few other reasons that aren’t immediately apparent, including environmental, with using less fuel to drive across borders, strengthening the region’s tax base and many others.
There are dozens of reasons why we should all shop local, at least for some of our household goods, and The Free Press would like to hear from you about why you shop local and why others should too. Send us a letter to firstname.lastname@example.org.