LTE: Businesses Are Dying!
I have been accused of being “whiny” because of my position on how businesses are being treated during this pandemic. So, let me be very clear: I believe COVID to be real (I had it and it sucks). I believe we all must wear masks (we required staff to wear masks in the butcher shop prior to the mandate). And, I believe that some restrictions make sense. When it comes to restrictions – I’m not an expert to be able to say which are working, but we follow every one of them.
Having said all of that and after the last nine months working with our customers and having to be in public to keep our business running, I see most people wearing masks. I see a few businesses just totally ignoring the rules. And I see, almost every single day, empty restaurants – including ours – CLEAVER.
These restrictions have created an environment for many restaurants to hit the pause button. This week alone, two of our wholesale customers at The Butcher & Grocer had to shutter.
Here’s what’s happening to the service industry, other than the obvious of very few people going to or ordering from restaurants. PPP and other aid has run out. This life line was just about enough money for each business to stay open, with no revenue, for about three to four months. Now the aid money is gone and now revenue is 50-75% lower.
This is not sustainable. Congress needs to act. Today. They need to quit the bickering and get a direct aid package to the president’s desk – TODAY.
Some reading this will say, “just defy their orders – resist!” This position doesn’t work for many reasons, but the biggest being, even if we did, is that most people are scared to go out to eat. Plus, it’s super easy to give that dumb advice when your entire life savings isn’t tied to the business.
Here’s the bottom line. As long as restaurants are restricted from operating at 100% capacity, they are going to struggle staying open. It’s just a fact that for most restaurants, carryout alone will not keep the ship above water.
Please get out there and support locally owned restaurants. Buy their gift cards for Christmas presents. They need you now more than ever.
BUSINESSES ARE DYING!
-Tony Tanner, Owner of The Butcher & Grocer and Managing Partner of Cleaver, both in Grandview Heights
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