I did wonder if perhaps I had misread the intention of an unsolicited email I received this week from a local restaurant group. At first, I had assumed it was a description of what those restaurants planned to do to during this “shelter in place” time: perhaps a takeout or delivery model, or maybe a plan to offer whatever excess unperishable food they still had to those in the community that needed it.
I was taken aback, perturbed, gobsmacked even, to receive instead a plea for donations to support “our laid-off staff and their family.” So, in case I had misunderstood its intention, I read the email again; and again, there, clearly and unavoidably, was that “donate” button.
Yet the family that owns this mini-celebrity group of restaurants has an estimated net worth of hundreds of millions of dollars.
To be fair, we all deeply empathize with and want to support all those service workers who depend not only on somewhat meager wages, but also on supplementary tips to make it through the month. Fortunately (though we know it can only go so far to meet the need), the government is supposedly coming to their aid at this time. Indeed, The Express/Press has laid out a helpful guide not just to what’s becoming available but also how to access it.
My question is why this successful group, unlike other local restaurants, has chosen to ask for help rather than to give it.
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