• John Luis

Businesses In COVID-19 America

Updated: Oct 30, 2020

To be quite honest, it's no secret what comes to mind when we think about the last seven months. The COVID-19 virus. Dictating everything from when and where we can go places, what we can get at the store, who we can see, whether we can go to school, and how businesses operate. During the course of the pandemic, businesses have had to be determined essential or non-essential, and if non-essential they’ve been forced to shut down. Some have had to close for good.

With positive numbers and reduced cases in California, some businesses have been able to reopen with tough restrictions at that. Have you driven by Denny’s yet? If you have, you might have noticed overhead canopies outside, with people dining underneath rather than eating inside. Have you tried to get a haircut lately? You might have also noticed it is very hard to find a salon that is open, or cuts hair inside.

Landy De La Hoya, owner of Glory Hair Studio in Westminster, said: “Thankfully COVID didn't affect my business the way that it has others. Luckily loyal clients and even new clients are coming. COVID has been more of a nuisance than damaging. It seems like it's open and reopen, open and reopen. So far I've closed and opened twice. It is difficult that I've had to change how I run and clean. In general, stylists are clean already, but because of COVID I have to go above and beyond, more than ever before”.

De La Hoya is one of the lucky ones to not have their business devastated by COVID-19. COVID-19 was unexpected and caught many business owners off-guard. “I happened to have some money saved up for ‘rainy days’, as they say. So when times got rough while I was shut down, I had something to live off of. Not everyone has money saved up though,” she says. Even some business owners who were shut down, only to reopen again, had no more than a day or two's notice, leaving them unprepared for business.

The stress COVID-19 has put on businesses has caused over 100,000 businesses to close permanently due to the pandemic according to The Washington Post. CNBC also reports that Yelp data shows 60% of businesses that closed due to COVID-19 were permanent closures. These are people's lives, their retirement, and their way of living. When asked about her views on the regulations and the closure of businesses, De la Hoya replied: “As someone who actually has COVID right now, I feel the regulations and all of the precautions are there for a reason. I hate them, but they are for a reason. To be honest, I do think we should open the country up. Our economy is suffering and literally in a state of crises. If we don't open up soon, there might be nothing left to open.” As one would expect, lockdown would naturally cause certain businesses to thrive. According to news website The Verge, Amazon has seen double in its profit, as well as some delivery companies such as Postmates and other doorstep services. And activities such as drive-in theaters have boomed in popularity since the beginning of the pandemic.

With the global pandemic sinking its teeth in the world's economy earlier this year, the U.S. has seen some of the worst economic drops since 1987. The Pew Research Center states that as a result of COVID-19 the U.S. unemployment rate went from 3.5% in February, one of the lowest on record in the post-WWII era, to 13.0% in May, some even reporting levels as high as 14.7%. Through the course of COVID-19, it is estimated that 20.6 million jobs were lost, around double the amount lost in the 20072009 Great Recession, which peaked at 8.7 million jobs lost.

On March 27, 2020, the federal CARES Act was signed into law. The CARES Act aids in providing fast and direct economic assistance for American workers, families, and small businesses, as it preserves jobs for American industries. With the Coronavirus wreaking havoc on businesses and families across the country, the government assistance program can provide families with much needed funds to help survive during the economic crises. Under the Paycheck Protection Program, a program under the CARES Act, businesses can receive help to pay their employees, hire back laid off employees, and cover overhead costs.

With fluctuating levels of cases in California, it's unclear when we will return back to normal, if we ever do return back to normal. The best we can do is wait and hope for the best.

here is a picture of De La Hoya:

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