The fallout from novel coronavirus (AKA COVID-19) has hit the United States in many more ways than just the arrival of a bear stock market. The travel restrictions and social distancing efforts have had a significant impact upon the service industry including shops, dining and hospitality. Our family-owned micro-enterprise is no different.
While we are suffering from a lack of revenue to maintain monthly expenses and provide cleaning hours to Turnover Specialists, we have also needed to address the safety and well-being of our guests, host partners and employees. Therefore, we have instituted a series of small but helpful changes to minimize transmission of the virus:
- Switched from a natural disinfectant to a bleach-based sanitizing solution proven by the CDC to kill the COVID-19 virus
- Paying extra attention to surfaces, switches, knobs, locks, remotes, etc.
- Aerosol disinfectant spray for soft surfaces like upholstered sofas and chairs
- Additional instructions for employees ensuring glove use and hand washing
- Enforcing the shoes-off policy to minimize tracking the virus throughout the space
We recognize that our fellow Portland-based service-industry workers may be suffering as a result of the economic downturn caused by COVID-19. Here are a few resources for impacted employees:
- All employees in the Portland metro area qualify for protected sick time
- Employers with more than six employees must pay this time away. Employees accrue this time at a rate of one hour for every thirty worked.
- Unemployment Insurance may be available for reduced work hours or layoffs
- Twitter users can use the hashtag #WeGotThisPortland to connect with others who need assistance and those offering it
- Stay connected with neighbors via social media like Next Door and Facebook groups
Resources for small businesses impacted by the slowdown:
- Ensure any staffing slowdown measures taken do not result in a discriminatory outcome.
- Greater Portland resource list for employers managing through the pandemic
- Work Share Oregon can provide financial relief for employees whose hours have been reduced at [email protected] or 1-800-436-6191. The employer must apply for these benefits, not the employee.
- Small Business Advocate at [email protected] or 1-844-469-5512.
The outbreak of the novel coronavirus aka COVID-19 has proven more than ever just how reliant we are upon one another for our shared survival and success. While the contagion has forced us behind closed doors and away from crowds, we must try to stay connected and help our most vulnerable through this crisis. Give your friends and family a quick text or nudge on social media to tell them you love them and for goodness sake, wash your hands!