Local small business owner joins with NRF in concerns about future

LEXINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) – Pick any street in downtown Lexington, and you can easily see the number and importance of small retailers.

And when they close, as many have across the country, it means more than an empty storefront.

“There’s going to be knock on consequences from these shutdowns for a long time to come,” said small business owner John Morman.

Morman and his wife are the owners of Celtic Tides, a specialty shop in Lexington, but he is also a new member of the National Retail Federation’s small business retail council.

“The NRF is the largest advocacy group of its type in the world,” Morman explained.

They’re worried that another quarantine, like those being seen in Europe, could be fatal to small retailers like them.’

“With the last round of shutdowns that England put into effect last week,” Morman said, “They have said, already in a week, 2,000 business have announced – small businesses have announced they’re going out of business.”

He’s urging small businesses and those who support them, to not only shop locally to keep them open, but to reach out to political leaders.

“Because you see what happens is, when the government imposes these restrictions, essentially they’re picking winners and losers,” according to Morman.

He hopes that there won’t be a new round of shutdowns, which could shut down some retailers forever.

“The long term consequences for small business and small towns and cities like Lexington are going to be felt for a considerable time into the future,”Morman said. “And they need to know that there are groups that are fighting to stop that.”

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