« Reveal

The Cost of COVID-19

2020-04-18 | 🔗

Can the biggest stimulus in modern U.S. history stave off home foreclosures, save businesses and prevent the worst economic crash since the Great Depression? 

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
From the centre for investigative reporting in p r ex this is reveal I'm mallet. In the end, I don't need to tell you We are living through some scary times than most of us. Never aging could happen something at my house right now and Emma Neighbourhood is normally pretty busy this time of day its family friendly, pull feeding with life, but now the any cars on the road, the absence of little kids laughter, it's what's eerie, it's like we're all trapped in a story and not reality. Admit it's easy for me to go there, because I read a lot of posts apocalyptic stories, the one that stands out mine right now is parable of the solar by Octavio Butler. It's about that observe society and a woman who forms a community out of the remnants of the book makes it clear that win the war.
It is falling apart as much as one thing. It's all the things In this area were in that feels true, as we grapple with the middle crisis surrounding covert nineteen there's also an essential one. We are going in the global recession. This is worse than two thousand and eight. This is worse than I can. Eighty seven, in fact, we anticipate the worst. Economic fallout sees the great depression. Now we Hope it doesn't go that way, but many of the world's leading economists believe we could be facing the worst crash and close to a century. That's despite Congress passing a two point: two trillion dollar stimulus package. Well, thank you. All very much is a very important day outside the single biggest economically package history and I must say that relief package provided hundreds
billions of dollars for small businesses, but from the start it was plagued with problems. People founded harder by four and it's already run out of money will be spent. Today show talking to small business owners and their employees with more than two. Twenty ten million Americans now at work. We start by looking at whether this crisis could and with people losing the very homes, have been forced to isolate themselves in his reveals Erin glance. There's this little house about forty miles north
San Francisco at the end of a computer rail line, it's a single story, Bungalow built in nineteen twenty three in the old downtown of Pittsburgh. California, a man's every day in right now, because this is where my kids can be and safe place. Monica Peres's sheltering in place here with her two kids. I believe what this epidemic there we have right now. This is the only place where they can feel safe monarch as a single mom. It, a pre school teacher she lost her job last month when the school shut down, because the corona virus and four weeks she's been trying to reach her back. Thank you for calling love Fargo. You reached our customers system. Fine, we're here to help during she calls cause. I can't get anyone on the phone if you are calling for this than did you. Nineteen impact pleased, listen closely. The bills, Cuba up, not only Monica mortgage. There is also the electric bill: food gas, she's,
about losing her home at this critical time. We are working to serve you as quickly as possible. Please say state and take care of yourself and your loved one Monica bought this house for a hundred thirty thousand dollars in twenty eleven right after the housing bust, it's more than doubled in value. Since then, her home is her life savings and her mortgage payment is her largest monthly expense. Wells Fargo is offering borrowers like Monica forbearance, which means that she doesn't have to pay her mortgage right now, but she will eventually they gonna kill me. That all your mortgage, so now that's not it worse. Furs. Wills far goes. Profits are weighed down because the corona virus, but it still entered this crisis flush with cash
The bank returned thirty billion dollars to shareholders through stock by backs in dividends last year and still reported twenty billion dollars and profit. Monica says she has two months where the savings Winnie does the US to be cancelled, like cancel, like millions of Americans Monica, doesn't know how long should be out of work, and every month she doesn't pay her mortgage she's worthy ultimate bill will be that much bigger, and it shall never be able to catch up even if she gets her old job back. We're gonna though it is because the job is gonna, be the same one that pay gonna, be say one. How we're gonna do this I'm pretty sure. I'm not the only one Monica is stuck at home and stuck on hold wondering. What's gonna happen to her and the powerful people
We're supposed to help her and millions of other Americans are sheltering in place I am working from home out of my home office that sparked Calabria. You may not have heard of him, but he's one of the most powerful people in America. When it comes to housing, he helped led the libertarian think tank the Cato Institute, President Trump appointed him director of the federal Housing finance agency. Now he can almost half of all mortgages in Amerika, for both homeowners, an landlords and like the rest of us, he's not sure. What's going to happen next, if got a crystal ball and can tell me where we're gonna be in three months. I really would appreciate ensure that would make stuck at home. Mark Calabria has still taken action, he suspended forecasts sure on loans owned by the giant government controlled mortgage companies, Fanny may and Freddy MAC for people hurt by the crisis,
The two trillion dollars stimulus took those protections even further. Here's what that means for you, if you're a homeowner with one of these loans and you ve, lost your job. Calabria says you should ask your bank to put after payments and the banks have to do it if you're a landlord and your tenets can't pay their rent, because the pandemic you're supposed to get relief to and if you're a tenant, it's a little confusing if living in a building where the landlord has a mortgage backed by family May or Freddy MAC you're protected from eviction. We at the federal level have said If you were more, have a federal back mortgage, we will give you forbearance in order to pass I want your tenets, who may have lost their jobs or loss of income, but here's the problem. Almost nobody knows who owns their mortgage, its rarely the company you write your monthly check to,
and if homeowners don't know who owns their mortgage, you better believe tenants have no clue who owns their landlords, Calabria. His tenants should just ask, but really, if your candidate can't make your run first version, you. Doctors, your landlord and if your landlord says well, you know I I eat, or rather how do I pay my mortgage? You can always say, and you can say to the landlord. Listen if you have a fanny or Freddy Mortgage, though they will give you forbearance, because the rent can't be paid you're telling tenants were often very vulnerable. Called their landlord and ask their landlord. Who has the mortgage on the property agreed? I would be the first to say it is a convoluted and it's not the cleanest solution, but it's also the is, as they regulator Fanny prayer. The mortgage is the only solution I can offer it's a solution built for a short term crisis.
But there are already signs were likely heading for a bigger downturn. Tens of millions of people have already filed for unemployment, and many homeowners doubt delaying their mortgage payments will be enough to save them. What do you say to the pre school teacher that I talk to whose now out of work doesn't know one she's getting her job back and would just like the mortgage payments during the crisis to be cancelled? I think that I think she needs to take up with Congress. I don't have the ability to do that. Our objective at the end of the day is to get up body back on their feet and keep them in their home if this goes longer will have longer term solutions but
with the hope that we are only in the situation for two or three months during the two thousand eight housing crisis, the banks that helped cause the collapse by issuing millions of bad loans got a massive bail out, and now american banks are in great financial shape. They cleared two hundred thirty billion dollars in profit last year, so I asked Calabria why struggling American should have to make up their payments instead of forcing the banks and government run mortgage companies to eat that loss family may, which she overseas made fourteen billion dollars last year. I appreciate that Janni and Freddy have a combined five trillion dollar footprint. So let us put it this way, for instance, where we simply to forgive mortgage payments for all its meaning. Freddy's
They go bankrupt in two weeks since I'm responsible for that not happening the broader question of whether there should be a mortgage, a rat holiday. That's a question for Congress. I met a legislator, I'm a regulator like everyone else. Members of Congress are not supposed to leave the house right now that can come upstairs. The next to the bedroom and a small craft are office. Congressmen chewing RCA spoke to us from his home, a single family house of the South West side of Chicago. He tried and failed to put stronger tenant protections, including a national moratorium on evictions into the two.
Billion dollars. Stimulus bill president Trump signed last month that bill passed without a single hearing. Garcia says it was difficult for even members of Congress to be heard. The last bill was the biggest single bill enacted by Congress in its history, with only a handful of people actually meeting face to face mostly doing that negotiation, the phone, so it's a very exclusive process, even more so than the normal process in Washington at what you get Garcia says: he'll, keep pushing, there's gonna, be another stimulus bill and he's trying to include a hundred billion dollars to help vulnerable tenants. Pay rent people are going to remember that the big financial institutions that were bailed out in the two
An agreement were many of the same culprits who brought about the financial meltdown on Wall Street. There was attributable to shear greed. What people know in the onset of the pandemic is that they need help and they expect the government to help them in their time of need. The Trump administration is already negotiating with Congress over what the next aid package will look like representative Maxine Waters is on the deal making team she's chair of the Financial Services Committee, one of the most powerful Democrat Congress. I reached her at her home. In LOS Angeles, we will be doing everything that we can to make sure that people can have a decent quality of life and that they won't be so Burton that they give up and that they walk away or that they lose their homes, and so we're going to do real good over
but it's been tough waters tried to get a national moratorium on all foreclosures, no matter which company owns the mortgage into the last stimulus that didn't happen, and you wanted: three hundred million dollars to prevent banks and landlords from discriminating against people of color during the pandemic. She got a fraction of that just two and a half million, but the kind of relief that out of work, pre school teacher Monica Perez wants to have her mortgage payments during the crisis, not just delayed but disappear. Maxine waters doesn't see that happening. I do not at this point, but
I sympathise with that identify with that, and that would be an extraordinarily generous thing for this country to do boy. It's homeowners. What I like to see forbearance I like to see each individual worked with five airbag by that services, so that you can figure out what they incomes are, what the debts, ah, how they will be able to manage. That's exactly what out of work. Homeowners are trying to do right. Now. To wealth, Fargo Home Lending customer assistance, please hold ballet transfer, you Monica was still having trouble getting everyone from Wales. Far go on the phone well I mean calling them continue doing the same thing that I have to do. I can get a whole anybody, yet I started working with Monica trying to figure out of her. Loan was owned by one of the big government controlled mortgage companies, Fanny may or Friday MAC. I walked or through some tools which
buried on a Treasury department website. So workers know your options. Loan look up, click there. Now I had them, so I dug into the property record Monica Loan is backed by another government agency, the Federal Housing Administration that mortgage is also covered by the stimulus package, It means that Monica can delay making payments for up to a year. She won't be fined for late payments, but eventually shall have to make it all up now what she wanted, but it will keep her and her children in their house. For now that story was from reveals airing glance and Catherine Miss Gower Ski Aaron reached out wells, Fargo and
what was going on with Monica Loan Laden Wanna talk, but a spokesperson emailed saying someone would get in touch with Monica to review our options and get her the assistance she needs homeowners are the only ones struggling. Small businesses are also looking for help to stay afloat during this crisis. That stories coming up next reveal But listen. Four investigative reporting and p r eggs- this is reveal a malleson unemployment claims, or all time high, with more expected, as social distancing continues, but most the country in some form of lockdown chances are, you are making any hotel reservations anytime soon. Did the two hundred billion dollar hotel industry pretty hard? While you may
be familiar with brand names like Hilton height and marry at most of the hotels you stay and actually owned by small businesses. That's because over ninety percent of the nearly thirty three thousand hotels in United States franchised and those for engine Donors are the ones struggling to keep employees. On. The job reveals Jonathan Jones has Thank you for calling debutante. I can help you. Yes, I man looking to talk with now, yet somehow fear. I reach Mohammed Islam or MO at the front desk of the holiday Inn, Express and sweets and Columbus Ohio. It's a slow day really slow. Nobody here right now. Normally the spring season is packed as fitness enthusiasts from around the world flock into town for the Arnold Sports Festival.
It's one of the city's largest gatherings hosted by yes, Arnold shorts and eager, but the event was cancelled due to concerns about the corona virus. I think it was the right thing to do, because we want to keep people safe and we want to keep people healthy. The morning I talked to mow fewer than ten rooms. Out of the hotels one hundred are occupied, the bullies goes is actually only one person in the funding. If you see in the morning to maybe one or two he has come down for the check out, they go outside as it been silent it yeah. Can you gonna? Hardly NEA. Go had many of them
have been vacant. For more than a month, the conference rooms are locked in a lounge near the lobby has been blocked off site for oh, no, no, no, that's fine. Do you gotta? Do your job MO was born in Bangladesh and moved to Columbus and twenty twelve, so his wife could be closer to her family. He started on the night shift, making minimum wage and gradually worked his way up to a salaried front disposition. He says he now brings home close to two thousand dollars a month with schools closed his wife stopped working to take care of their two young kids, the monthly bills. However, stop for no one, there's the two engine, twenty dollars for the handy sonata, a thousand dollars for the mortgage, his savings he says, will only last month or two so every day, even as the covert nineteen crisis deepens MO keep showing up for work, I'm terribly worried about that for decades, but the wire
for most says he's grateful to still have a job, even though his hours have been reduced. No one at this hotel has been laid off, at least not yet, but that possibility is on everyone's mind that unprecedented something tat we ve never seen before. That's that's a first nor industry, man of seeing is most boss. He co owns this holiday, unexpressed with his dad, along with the stay bridge, sweets next door, You saw close to half a million dollars worth of business from each one of the hotels just vanished overnight between their two hotels manner than his dad are struggling to keep fifty people on the payroll. Some of our employees have been with us for more than ten years. Our executive housekeeper price, fifty five miles a day, one way from out Gilead Ohio and she has been. My dad ever since he was just a journal
manager by hotel. Eighteen years ago, man often is dead, run their hotels as franchises of the intercontinental hotels group or I gee, which includes brands like Holiday Inn and Crown Plaza like fast food rest nonsense, car dealerships, the franchise hotel model relies on a company, in this case age. To provide a brand name, some standards in general operating procedures. In turn, the local franchise owner puts up the money for the business, takes on the mortgage or the construction debt hires employees and essentially has the responsibility of running the place. They also pay fees to the parent company for things like marketing, upkeep and reservations. In recent years it was generally a profitable model for both sides of this kind. But when things go wrong like when a global pandemic wipes out your entire revenue base, seemingly overnight its franchise
like monarch, who are left trying to keep things afloat, there's no hd corporate officers, corporate employees standing at our desks aching air of situations that we face for hand, Mamma, says, he's become increasingly frustrated with what he sees as a lack of guidance and assistance from the corporate office as the crisis unfolded h, G was sending emails telling owners they should close. The poor shut down. The breakfast bar lock up the fitness center, but he says that's not the type of guidance he needed. I mean not. None of us would be hoteliers today if we didn't know that right, the bad, I think the owners would have loved to have seen was communication. A guys we are working on
helping all of you financially in some capacity stay tuned monarch, went to the online form of the age G Owners Association, which was flooded with post. The association is independently run, but housed inside corporate headquarters in Atlanta online owners were asking lots of questions trying to find out what individual, who else were doing monarch, make contact with Samina sharp owner of a holiday and express two thousand miles away in San Jose. California wanted to come. Things in dealing with age, she is the stone Walled. One sided communication and I felt like for the first time I was talking to an owner who wanted to go beyond that. Then, on March, seventeenth monarchs account on owners was disabled, though he says he didn't violate any code of conduct. He email to screen shot to a bunch of his colleagues also knew had a fury of ours stand behind This- is we're not right. This is not a democratic way of
This organisation, they eventually reactivated his account and apologize Samina and Mana formed a new ad hoc organisation called the hotel owners community to advocate for more relief, Samina started, firing off sharply critical, open letters and emails to corporate saying things like while your executive team is moaning, other options on how best not to let your stock price further tank. We are here to dealing with the crisis first hand age. She has made some changes, including relaxing standards and offering discounts off more.
Sitting in reservation fees. Samina tells me that doesn't really help you're gonna laughing. You hear how mind boggling the thin it really great marketing is what it is. Ok, well, what'd they base and marketing, seeing the reservations, growth room, the revenue. So you have to sell room in order to pay these feet, but, as you know, from putting to what we don't have any revenue so zero times, three is still. There are no time twenty five. Is there not a lot of huge breaks there right Samina, says what she and other hotel owners really need is more of a brake on the fix fees theirs hoping to h g fees that other hotel companies like best Western, have relaxed for their franchises. I don't understand why I'm paying fourteen dollar sixty five percent time, fifty seven room which comes out to about that In thirty five dollars per month
go away, whether I felt rooms or not, I shall have to pay them for their part. H g says they have offered some fee relief in an email statement. A spokesperson said they ve been working to support franchisees since the beginning of the crisis. Through the age she owners association by cutting corporate costs, including salaries, deferring planned up great the motivations and hosting webinar for owners, but Samina says she still not getting the support she needs. So, on April tenth she followed our workers and closed her hotel down. I'm not gonna stay operational and take all the risk. Just so I ain't she can make money. The last people on my list of things I care about right now Don't we joined this afternoon by the true leaders of our nations travel, hospitality and tourism, and on March seventeen the same day, manoeuvres account on the owners, form was shut down. President Trump met with executives from some of the biggest names in the hotel industry, h g c, o
they're. Going to Intercontinental fails group chief executive of America. We are nearly six thousand entails around the world. Thirty eight hundred Samina says she heard about the meeting, but didn't feel like it had anything to do with her. There is such a distance between need people in my position, licence fees and the ceos of these corporations. They sort of treat their franchisees as part of a team. When it suits them to bolster their numbers and look big and mighty, but then, when it comes down to actually get the spoils of war than like okay. Well, it's for corporate employed. Nowhere entirely out of the conversation. I think I'm very pleased that we can work together, the administration to find a solution to preserve network entrepreneurs across the country. We will find. A days later, the President signed the federal government's two point: two,
trillion dollar corona virus rescue package into law. Monarch says he's glad. The stimulus package includes several items like small business loans and tax breaks. That could help franchisees, but he says the loan we'll just add to the debt that hotel owners can barely manage as it is. There are out of hotel years that have not been able to meet their debt services this month. That is a fact. The stimulus acts major allocation, the three hundred and fifty billion dollar paycheck Protection programme was set up to give loans to small businesses to cover payroll and some operating costs. Some or all of these loans can be forgiven if a company keeps He just add or close to pre virus levels and doesn't lay any one off, but by the middle of April the programme had already run out of money. Monarch did up. But he says the maximum loan amounts aren't even enough for most hotel owners to cover payroll operational and mortgage cos, plus the franchise fees that many are still paying,
made. Everybody realise that we are on our own. And when this is over, we'll see who survives the largest hotel owners, trade group, the Asian America no Tell Owners Association says the federal relief package will not prevent mass lay offs. They so I expect to see a large number four closures and fail businesses as franchise owners default on loans in the coming months. Commissioner, like this, or why the hotel industry is set up in the way they today's poverty Dingo is a sociologist and Amherst College and author of a book about the hotel in motel industry. It can benefit during good times. Buttering bad times is relative, It is laid down as much damage as would otherwise be, but the people who will be hit hardest by the employees working in an industry where all the pressures to cut costs
our aim downward at the lowest wrongs of the latter? These are not highly paid jobs to definite, not glamorous jobs. They are often times part time jobs. They may not have full benefits that we would hope people to get so quickly right these individuals, who will either go from full time to part time or part time to unemployed, because the most important thing to do for these owners is finding a way to cut costs when there is less income coming in it's a simple matter of arithmetic nearly four million workers in the hotel industry have already been followed or are expected to lose their jobs in the next few weeks.
Back at mine, ass holiday in Columbus front Desk Clerk Mo Islam still plans on showing up for work. I believe some within a couple of months. Maybe we get back again if it again, we can get together. I wish this job wasn't around or you get laid off like what options do you have? Actually, I have no option other than that, then I find out new, because what gummy expanse mixed there's not a stop to the company less than I can survive, mix them two months after them, thereby to find out the new job. Give me one simply looking yeah, of course, of course, fighting the assistant. You need
called we'll be right with you. Thanks Jonathan shows that story. We made multiple request to interview eyes G executives, but they declined. Man of sing is one of several hotel. Franchise owners have posted petitions online. Asking core brands from more financial support by MID April, close to fifteen thousand signatures have been gathered. Small business owners of all kinds are suffering in the wake of covert nineteen from restaurants to our galleries, to dog grooming parlors will check in with one neighbourhood outside of Seattle and see how their shops are fairy up. Next on reveal
from the centre for investigative reporting in p r eggs. This is reveal a mallet. Do something now that people are doing much of these things taken a stroll down the street. In Europe we have a political weight and wild about only nine point, one another with a bar whites in its an urban neighbourhood and Keen county just south of Seattle. The roller rink sits on sixteenth avenue. The main drag you since nineteen, oh eight, the rings shiny, disco boy stop spinning. Its doors are closed due to the corona virus, like many more than two hundred businesses here. Many them started by immigrant from Vietnam, Cambodia, EAST Africa and Latin America, as we had north of the street on our right, we pass fond. Noodle shop
on cannabis, dispensary, proletariat, pizza and smoke tell which is still open for now at a mad rush for by roughly ten days, I think give people were kind of work about where they're gonna get their negative effects on Kim moved here from Flom twenty five years ago April for road around, and we noticed that packard people not work. It does a job and I noticed a lot of people bringing staged juices you'll see change at the end of the month, but there would she is very early, which is very disturbing as a business owner, and then you know that on April next or Nepal is errands, bicycle repair
I had a customer daring gas runs a place with his one. Employee business is good right now, thanks to sunny whether in a craving for outdoor exercise after right across the street is full tilt ice cream. We like say Seattle, most Punk Rock ice cream place. Henery Bracy works at the store and says the owner state open at first people tried really hard to support the business, we would have people come out just to support our business. That's the only reason they bought ice cream, but he got too hard. The shop shut down, laying off the staff Hennis collecting unemployment in trying to market her skills as an artist online, but now community is also taking it My name is John Printers and I'm the owner Unko, director of the cultural art gallery. It's a cultural centre and gift shop featuring it's an artist
made, are exhibition, a virtual gallery where you can contact the Irish. You British are directly from the artist Kilometers are also painting murals on newly boarded a buildings with messages like in this together and stay safe reveals. Emily hairs has been talking to business owners in white centre. It's a window into All the corona virus is affecting the thirty mill in small businesses around the country and the changes that communities like this will face as they struggle to survive. Wait. Censure got associated with the corona virus early on. There were no reported cases there, but it was the first spot. County officials chose to put a quarantine facility temporary trailers with isolation rooms for up to forty people. I found out about it. Maybe ten minutes before the press release and was just extremely
irritated see. These have also leads the White Centre Community Development Association, a nonprofit that supports families in small businesses she didn't question the need for quarantine centres around Seattle. She questioned the powers that be imposing it on white centre. A low income long time, immigrant neighbourhood, with little political clout. This wasn't, not wanting to help people who have to deal corona is just look where you putting. It is continuing to perpetuate this whole institutionalize race, I and not giving lights ETA community a voice in something like this is really important on a costume heard about plans. For the quarantine centre from her sister, the two have owned a bakery and restaurant in White Centre for almost twenty five years, they know and then Why, in I thought we have that here, we are not going to have any custom coming through our bakery dissenters still hasn't opened, but the corona virus.
Has nearly shut down on his business anyway. She's only doing take out and had to lay off half the employees She and her sister now work seven days a week. They clean They sell the enforced social distancing, other families. Have have stepped into help for free Anna can't stop the questions rolling in her mind. How are we going to keep without with How are we going to survive thing? We were king of our retirement planning our retirement in now. These Like I mean you, life is ending on her application into the new three hundred fifty billion dollar paycheck protection programme before it ran out of money. This past week, small businesses across the country applied, including us here, reveal if ANA gets approved, that could help. Her pay the handful of employees. She still has and may be higher come back
we are finally be this, then we care about employees in a lot of and the pair for a mass. I have a family, the she's, the only while working I now hear because it has by Hassan they him off in this is the only job that she has at this moment. Honour also has utility bills and rent. She says the power, company and her landlord said she could pay later, but eventually she'd have to pay in full. This is a small business, mean boy nor Microsoft, Amazon nigh cancer by any longer, if we'd, all I mean get any help Anna applied for a local grant from the White Centre Community Development Association they ve set aside one hundred thousand dollars for businesses hurt by corona virus closures. The is so tiny compared to the need, as small,
was the virus itself. You might say, Helen Shore. One is in charge of figuring out the guidelines for those grants. She is sitting down with local business owners to find out what they need, so we go through. The question goes with the merchant being aware, where you put the grant dollars. If we gave them, can you in writing the going right to wrench just go back to the landlord? back to the property. Paying rent is vital to keep many local merchants from going under right now, but Helen, would see the rescue many stay with local businesses instead of going to their landlords. The hardest part of this, I think, be inequity prior to cope it's gonna be there after covered with, I think, a greater intensity. A fifteen minute walk from honest bakery, Deborah Schwarzkopf runs Rat City studios, ceramics workshop right now,
a lot of her cash is tied up in clay. She shows me on video conference a wall of cardboard boxes. Each box is fifty pounds of clay and they are stacked five high in one two, three four. Five, six, seven eight nine rose, and this is both. For myself and for the classes that I would have held. She walks outside to show me her studio pension plans that are now on hold the day that I found for permits to get my cam extent, Jane going their king County Permeate office closed, so that sound hard, not to mention I can't pay for it now. Deb earns living selling, pottery teaching classes here and around the country and training young potter's. When the corona virus cancelled a big national ceramics conference, she lost thousands of dollars in sales and work.
Jobs. She is earning some money by teaching ceramics classes on line for the first time I have gotten, I think, we're greater funds have also spent a ridiculous amount of money on cords and dongle also hard to get everything to hook up and I have ordered so many wrong cords. It's stupid, like ANA Debbie's, applying for any help. She can. I have applied for a facebook, grant arising grants have applied for as Ba alone a BBC. You alone, which is my bank, being you see you as a credit union with a neighborhood office in White Centre shortly after Deb applied it and many other banks got overwhelmed and stopped taking applications for the Patient protection programme. Then, ten days after opening the federal government shut, the programmes do worse, saying, available, funding had run out Helen Shore Wong
does that many white centre business owners didn't even get a chance to apply. They told her that, from the start, they kept running into walls. So how annoying part of you a thank you know about them about the people but they are not ready or or how can I talk to my bank and they're, not even processing the PPP and then you get the bank? That said, you know we're already over committed, and so what happened there? Many of our community businesses will come in a little bit way in the game, though, with a very difficult situation it's kind of causes, paralysis that should be aiming at, overwhelming, like honour at the bakery Deb, has no idea what her ceramics business will look like on the other side of this kind.
Just feeling motivated to keep going as kind of hard cause anyway, because it feels complex and uncertain. Many of the business owners I spoke within. White center are doing the same as dead and honour are trying to stay afloat New ways applying for whatever help they can but young show, is an exception. Back in February, he posted a video on Facebook. Announcing that he was about to turn his popular text MAX asian fusion, food cart into of bricks and mortar restaurant in White Center, but covered nineteen changed his plans. I just knew how would it be able to essentially any time the near future. As far as you
you can tell he doesn't qualify for any financial help, local or federal, because I don't have payroll establish. I technically have an open my doors, I'm not eligible for any of these programs. I'm going to talk to her, is on a couple lawyer: bodies, a mine, unthinkable, finance, guys and they're. Just pretty much all kind of have the same consensus. I mean that grey area he had staff lined at that hadn't hired them he's paying rent on his new restaurant, but can't open his food truck is all but closed. He's offering his facebook followers. A few dishes delivered truck business was supposed to bring in cash for the restaurant innovations. Young figures he's already about twenty thousand bucks behind where he needs to be to open his borrowing from friends and wondering how long he can hold on its hug having a child in the middle of a zombie apocalypse is gonna work,
but, alas, like my child, but I can't release into this world because impending doom is likely, you know, small businesses that impending doom would be closing doors forever. If that happens widely across the country could keep unemployment high for a long time. In White centre. Community leaders have another worry too. If covered nineteen closures here turn into bankruptcies outside investors could swooping buy up immigrant own businesses, bring about more gentrification and perhaps mentally change the character of this community thanks to reveals Emily hairs for bringing us the vibe of white sinner, even virtually violated We have the story of another chef whose doing with ever he can
to keep his business alive to support his employees and his community, whose rapporteur, teenage leaning with that story in two thousand five just days after Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, devastated New Orleans Shuffle Wonka found himself in the parking lot of alluded Walmart. He set up a propane burner and a giant pot and made The worst potter, red beans and rice had ever made in my life, no and no peppers, no sausage. But the simplicity didn't seem to matter to the people who were eating everywhere in the parking lot gathered around his table. I was feeding people. Either had just been rescued from the room of their homes or people who are rescuing those people from the roofs of their homes. Along whose originally from Israel says the experience, changed him it drove me to fall in love with New Orleans? I mean it gave me a sense that
can contribute something of a feeling like I was needed and I'd never felt that way from a city before it still his impulse to feed people now, as his city has been thrust into. The crisis, have covered nine. In, but the necessity of social distancing has been disorienting. It's just been so much more from using, and it's been so much scarier, because I feel like there's justice hurricane. Blowing through the air into people's lungs. You can't see it on a rate. Are you don't know where it's coming from? You don't know The storm is here yet poor, not I've known, on four years. Even in his restaurants, collaborated with him on a cook book and never in all that time, have I seen him so distressed. He and his wife Emily run there two israeli restaurants, one
New Orleans and one in Denver together. Emily says they could feel the storm gathering back on Friday night March. Thirteen they were at their New Orleans, restaurant Sabah. We actually were busy. I then we ve ever been because I think people maybe the I coming down the line and we're going out to support the restaurants. Father could Alonso dining rooms. All over New Orleans were packed of down magazine street and saw the bars we're flowing with people in the coffee shops overflowed with people, and it felt like this very The experience of like what king the news I'm hearing about this, this. Storm. That's about a hit us by midday. On that Sunday, the mare announced that hundreds of restaurants in the city would have. To close their dining room by nine p m that night restaurants, they'll be limited in terms of their operations to take out delivery or pick up and then one day the day after
Emily, and I had the worst day of our entire lives along called every single member of their staff at both their restaurants. About in New Orleans and soft at their outpost in Denver, another city going into lockdown, he had to tell. Does and dozens of his employees that they were going to be followed, and I spent all day on the phone how can the average member or taxing with them, and I felt like we just kind of like failed next, it became a dance of trying to keep as many people still working as possible, while exposing them to the least amount of risk, both restaurants pivoted to take out and delivery, neither of which they done before we are gloves. We got masks, we got sanitize her. You know we set up a pickup area for the guests so that we wouldn't have to come into contact with them. We shifted to just putting the bag of
on the herd of someone's car each morning at the restaurants. They took everyone's temperature, but Emily says they still worried about whether it was safe. It was you uneasiness about being out there in front of customers and thinking like if we just We were only breaking even are losing money, and if that's what's happening, it's not worth it to be open They weren't the only ones feeling that way. There is a sense of desperation from all corners of the restaurant industry, which operates on such things regions that many are scraping by in normal times alone and Emily fitted again in New Orleans. They stop doing, take out and started selling homeless and Peter to a local grocery store chain. They turned softer their restaurant in Denver into a crisis relief centre, feeding hundreds of now unemployed, restaurant workers each
we ve been getting out toilet paper? We have an Amazon registry fur, diapers, baby, food, personal hygiene products and things like that that are being sent to the restaurant for us together The relief centre as part of a national initiative, the restaurant Workers relief programme organised by a chef in Kentucky Edward Lee all over the country. Restaurants, are figuring out new ways of caring for people, whether its cooking for homeless, folks, converting into grocery stores or banding together to feed and fund raised for the millions of hospitality workers who have already lost their jobs Meanwhile, in New Orleans, the number of covert nineteen cases was skyrocketing, allotted Emily decided to change course. Yet again, even doing homeless and Peter delivery to the grocery stores started, feeling too dangerous. So we shut that operation down and now we ve pivoted to just myself
in my home kitchen, cooking meals, fur doctors and nurses. So today looking at my house for no a duck project which is helping other medical residents get food every day at work I figured why not make some Peter bread at the Sir Broiler on in many ways. Alone and Emily are luckier than some. They have a strong network of connections to lean on out some dough. Their restaurants likely qualify for help from the government stimulus package passed last month and we're gonna serve that up with some homeless today, as well with roasted asparagus into Heaney level pepper, and while they can't do what comes naturally gather people physically too,
other they're, keeping busy exploring new ways to connect and be of help to their communities through food world. Why worry This is a lawns been fund raising for other relief efforts with online cooking demos, showing people how to make things like biscuits and killed job Eliza still a bit of a work in progress. He tried to make his touchy the taste tester. yes In such uncertain times, the laughter kills as soothing as the thanks to teenage leaning for that story. Gather was Jansky. Magee Romanian, Emily Harris produce states show it was editing bread, Myers, Genji and and Kevin Sullivan. With help from Esther Kaplan Talk, you tell
It is our senior supervising editor Victoria. Baronet, He's a general council, our production, is one day in a wholesome are sound design team is the dynamic? Do o J Breezy, Mr Jim Briggs? but Nando my manual Aruba, they help this week from Amy Mustafa are CEO, was crystal sharper than Thompson, is our you're chief. Our theme is My comrade of lightning support for reveals guided by the Raven David Logan Foundation, the job in Kathmandu, Macarthur Foundation, the janitor Logan Family Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the sing Simons Foundation, the democracy fund and the ethics and excellence in journals foundation reveal is a co production of the centre for investigative reporting and p r x amount lit and remember the only way
This is together.
Transcript generated on 2020-04-18.