Originally printed as a Letter to the Editor in The Post and Courier on Saturday, December 13th, 2014.

Each year Lowcountry Local First shouts from the rooftops about the importance of shopping locally during the holiday season. This year-round advocacy effort has the biggest push during the holidays when sales can make or break a business. “At the pace we all move today and the many things we all have on our plates, why should we take the time to consider supporting local businesses when purchasing a holiday gift? Well, it’s simple really. Think local because supporting a locally-owned business puts 3 times the amount of money back into our community than buying from a national chain store. This is because these businesses do business with other locals creating the all-important multiplier effect in the local economy. Think local because these businesses are headquartered here, so profits and taxes stay here rather than being shipped back to Arkansas or Washington State. Think local because quality of life matters most to you. Key to quality of life – good jobs. Shopping on Amazon creates 14 jobs for every $10 million spent versus shopping locally, which produces 57 jobs per $10 million spent. Think local because Charleston is a place of pride and part of that pride comes from knowing our place is unique, the people are exceptional, and the natural beauty stunning. We lose that if we become a city, state or region that is like any other – Anywhere, USA. So, I invite you to join me and many others in making steps toward conscious consumerism, not just during the holiday season but all year long, because truly, it is in our best interest. Think local first. It matters because our place matters.

 

Jamee Haley

Executive Director, Lowcountry Local First

people-jamee-haley

Lauren Gellatly
Community Development Director at Lowcountry Local First