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Sustainable businesses preparing for bird flu

Thursday 20th October 2005

Sustainable businesses preparing for bird flu epidemic

Western Bay businesses response to the May 18 flood event will be a useful guide for operating during a possible bird flu epidemic. That is the message that the Sustainable Business Network will be sending to businesses when they attend a flood-response forum in Tauranga on October 27th.

Topics at the forum include emergency preparation, relocating business activities and operating a business with depleted staffing - as was experienced during the flood event and would be the case during a flu epidemic.

In their opening September economic review the BNZ stated that a bird flu outbreak could force businesses to cope with 30% revenue shocks and staff no-show rates as high as 50%.

The forum will use an assessment of the impacts of the flood as a reference to find out how businesses can be better prepared for future emergencies. Suitably it is being held at the Historic Village on 17th Avenue, a business that was closed for over a month as a result of significant flood damage.

Regional manager for the Sustainable Business Network, Calum Revfem says that it is important to capture what worked well for businesses during the flood event while it is still fresh in people's minds. "We can use the lessons learned during the May 18 flood to be better prepared for operating our businesses during future emergencies such as a possible flu outbreak".

The public event is being held at Tauranga's Historic Village at 4pm on Thursday October 27th. There will be presentations from Tauranga City Council and IAG Insurance (NZI and State Insurance). There will be focused group discussions and an opportunity for businesses to ask questions.


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