Department Chairperson shared the last official tally of results for the company’s ongoing post-Dorian licensee survey, during a recent press conference at the GBPA Headquarters.
“As of today, we have reached out to over 1,000 licensees through the means of on the ground interviews, online surveys, telephone calls and by posting notices on their business establishment doors as we canvassed,” she said.
She furthered that their team of nine employees, which included her, were received favorably by their licensees.
“We recognize that our on the ground interviews worked best as it presented the opportunity to speak directly to the business owners who gave accounts of their experiences,” she said.
Further, she added, this presented an opportunity for company executives to assist with current needs such as direction on how to be reenergized; the process for transferring BTC landlines to mobile phones; assistance with debris removal; delivery of tarps and so on.
“Our survey thus far, involving 700 interviews, has revealed the following – 53 percent received flood damages; 16 percent roof and other damage; and 31 percent, no damages. Thirty-six percent of businesses were covered by insurance; 36 percent not covered and 28 percent did not respond. We found 66 percent of the businesses open; 15 percent to open within six months; and 19 percent unsure as to whether they will open,” she stated.
Seymour furthered that it is important to note that positive results come from these surveys.
“Post-Hurricane Matthew in 2016, the GBPA launched a similar survey and as a result of the damages to buildings at that time, we introduced a Business Rental Assistance Programme for businesses where the building was compromised and not able to be occupied,” she said.
Licensees who wanted to continue in business found a new location and that new landlord was paid $1,000 directly by the GBPA.
Consequently, Hurricane Dorian posed a new challenge for them, and the assistance programme of Matthew will not be applicable to Dorian.
“We will move to provide you with an update in the very near future, once we have had the opportunity to engage with more licensees,” she said.
Seymour encourages licensees to continue to provide the GBPA with their information and be very honest because they are working towards a solution to assist them.
“I wish to take this time to thank licensees for their participation in these surveys and encourage you to stay tuned,” she said.