Restaurants ask for public support after COVID-19 closure

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Restaurants have changed their business model to take-out and delivery after Governor Andrew Cuomo closed them to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“Everyone’s in one big pity party right now, and I mean that in the best sense of the word because everyone is struggling,” said El Loco Owner Patrick Noonan.

Assemblywoman Pat Fahy said she’s ordering to-go every day from a different restaurant to put money into the local economy.

“We have a public health crisis now, quickly followed by an economic crisis,” said Fahy.

BMT Managements’s Director of Operations Frank deLuca said nine restaurants are staying open for its staff, which now a third of what it was.

“They’re obviously being hit very, very, hard right now. We’re doing what we can. We’re putting together care packages for our employees,” deLuca said. “The public has been very generous as far as leaving gratuities for the staff,” deLuca said.

Pearl Street Pub Owner Chris Pratt agreed. He said it’s not just the businesses that need help staying afloat but the staff they support as well.

“We are the heart of this country, small businesses. I’ll make it. I can make it on peanut butter and jelly, but I have people who have children. And any way we can help them by supporting through take-out is going to help us get through this,” Pratt said.

Pratt said once things get back to normal he would like to hold a benefit concert for restaurant staff who lost their jobs.

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