Business owners not happy with reimplementation » EntornoInteligente

Business owners not happy with reimplementation

Entornointeligente.com / An­na-Lisa Paul

Star­ing at the de­sert­ed Board­walk in Ch­aguara­mas yes­ter­day as he stood in front of his snow-cone cart ready to serve any­one stop­ping for the ice treat, 64-year-old Gas­ton said, “Be­fore it was re­al­ly bad, but now it get more bad.” Gas­ton did not want to re­veal his sur­name.

Point­ing to the ab­sence of vis­i­tors at the pop­u­lar bathing spot as the di­rec­tive to close the na­tion’s beach­es took ef­fect at mid­night on April 15, he was un­able to say what would be his eco­nom­ic po­si­tion fol­low­ing the three-week clo­sure.

Set up out­side Pier One along the West­ern Main Road, Ch­aguara­mas, Gas­ton said he has been sell­ing the sweet con­fec­tion for the past 28 years.

Un­able to rule out a per­ma­nent clo­sure af­ter this pe­ri­od, he shook his head sad­ly as he ad­mit­ted, “It hard…it re­al­ly hard. They didn’t have to close the beach again. At the end of the day, they coul­da mon­i­tor it more but clos­ing down here, it don’t make sense.”

Of­fi­cials at the Ch­aguara­mas De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­i­ty (CDA) said mem­bers of the pub­lic ad­hered to the new reg­u­la­tions yes­ter­day.

Wood­brook busi­ness­es an­gry, dis­ap­point­ed

Busi­ness own­ers/op­er­a­tors in Wood­brook ex­pressed dis­ap­point­ment, anger and frus­tra­tion over the reim­ple­men­ta­tion of re­stric­tions which has seen a ban on in­ter­nal din­ing at restau­rants, bars and casi­nos; and a re­duc­tion in groups from 10 to five be­ing im­posed.

The man­ag­er of Wing It, lo­cat­ed at the cor­ner of Pe­tra Street and Ari­api­ta Av­enue, Wood­brook, said they may not be able to re­cov­er this time around.

Shar­lene See­baran said their dine-in op­er­a­tion will be se­vere­ly af­fect­ed as Fri­days and Sat­ur­days are usu­al­ly their busiest times.

Re­veal­ing sales had in­creased fol­low­ing the open­ing of this branch last De­cem­ber, she said with cus­tomers now hav­ing to ei­ther buy and go/or pick-up or­ders, many cus­tomers would no longer be in­clined to come to this lo­ca­tion.

See­baran be­lieves the au­thor­i­ties could have held dis­cus­sions with them be­fore again im­pos­ing such re­stric­tions.

“It could have been worked out. We could have come to some agree­ment be­cause we now re­al­ly start­ed back to pick up in the busi­ness again, and now we have to close up shop again,” she lament­ed.

Ad­mit­ting they had re­cent­ly in­creased their staff, See­baran asked, “Now we will have to prob­a­bly send them home again to their fam­i­lies and what will be­come of them and af­ter? Who is to say if this lock down will be pro­longed?”

With a po­ten­tial staff re­duc­tion of al­most 50 per cent loom­ing, See­baran said it was, “be­cause of this turn of events, we had no idea this abrupt an­nounce­ment was go­ing to come along.”

Fur­ther spikes in the COVID-19 num­bers re­sult­ing in longer bans could re­sult in ei­ther one of Wing It’s branch­es in Mar­aval or Wood­brook hav­ing to close.

Echo­ing See­baran’s com­ments was the own­er of Stages On The Av­enue, Jean-Marc Aimey pre­dict­ed, “Sales are go­ing to be dras­ti­cal­ly re­duced.”

Cur­rent­ly op­er­at­ing with one mem­ber of staff per shift, he said their prices are com­pet­i­tive­ly de­signed to al­low cus­tomers to max­i­mize their dol­lars.

How­ev­er, this lat­est lock down would ad­verse­ly im­pact their clien­tele.

He too said, “As en­tre­pre­neurs and busi­ness peo­ple, we look for­ward to com­ing up with so­lu­tions to prob­lems and we could have been ap­proached. We could have put mea­sures in place in or­der to pro­tect the liveli­hood of our busi­ness­es, as well as see about our staff and still ser­vice our cus­tomer base.”

Aimey said they had been care­ful­ly ad­her­ing to the reg­u­la­tions to sani­tise and en­sure cus­tomers were so­cial­ly dis­tanced.

“The cus­tomers them­selves dine and use the es­tab­lish­ment in a man­ner that is so­cial­ly re­spon­si­ble, so I def­i­nite­ly do not see there be­ing a cor­re­la­tion at es­pe­cial­ly our es­tab­lish­ment, and sim­i­lar restau­rant-type es­tab­lish­ments with the spike in the COVID-19 virus,” he claimed.

One of­fi­cial from an­oth­er pop­u­lar fine-din­ing restau­rant along Ari­api­ta Av­enue de­clined to pro­vide her name but said, “Peo­ple are dis­en­fran­chised and are an­gry. It could have been worked out.”

Chin: Movie Towne re­mains open for now

Cin­e­ma-go­ers were heart­ened to learn that Movie Towne, In­vaders Bay, Mu­cu­rapo will not be clos­ing as ini­tial­ly in­di­cat­ed by own­er Derek Chin yes­ter­day.

Dur­ing a tele­phone in­ter­view on CNC3’s The Morn­ing Brew yes­ter­day, Chin re­ferred to the lat­est re­stric­tions as a dis­ap­point­ment.

Claim­ing busi­ness had been “trend­ing pret­ty well” since re­open­ing last No­vem­ber, Chin said this move was frus­trat­ing.

He said, “every­body had been try­ing to get their busi­ness back on track and to reem­ploy some of the many staff who had been laid off for some time and had been feel­ing the hard­ship.”

Chin said dur­ing the pe­ri­od No­vem­ber 2020 to March 2021, there had been no sig­nif­i­cant in­creas­es in the num­ber of cas­es record­ed hence, “It proves that hav­ing these par­tic­u­lar busi­ness­es open have no di­rect ef­fect on caus­ing this Covid spread.”

He ques­tioned what em­pir­i­cal ev­i­dence had been col­lect­ed that could lead of­fi­cials to im­pose such a “carte blanche” di­rec­tive which would lead every­thing again be­ing shut down.

And he added, “I don’t ex­pect that by us clos­ing, it is go­ing to have an ef­fect on the spike. I ex­pect it is go­ing to con­tin­ue be­cause we have not con­tributed to the spike in the past and the da­ta is there for every­one to see.”

Fol­low­ing a meet­ing yes­ter­day with stake­hold­ers, Chin con­firmed in a What’s App mes­sage that, “Movie Towne will re­main open from to­mor­row (to­day) and will show movies on­ly.” He said con­ces­sion stands will be closed as per the lat­est re­stric­tions.

LINK ORIGINAL: The Trinidad Guardian

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