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Small businesses struggling to stay open amid COVID-19 surge

(Maranda Whittington)
Published: Jan. 5, 2022 at 5:46 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - As we enter yet another year of the pandemic, many businesses have struggled to stay afloat or had to close their doors because of COVID-19.

Now as we enter into this new year, businesses like Retro Downtown say it’s scary.

”I thought that when I opened this I could step back and let it be,” said owner Kristi Tift.

In 2019, Tift says she did not foresee a pandemic or having to close on of her businesses because of it.

“I had another restaurant on the end here and they’re gone and closed because I could not pay for the rent. In thirty days this business had to be closed because I was having to find somewhere else to live,” she said.

With more than 10,000 new COVID-19 cases, other businesses like the Fat Calf have had to shut their doors due to employees getting sick.

Tift says a main issue is finding help.

”I have to close whenever I have to go to the doctor or when my kids are out of school,” she said.

According to the Head of Goodwill Workforce Lynn Stevens, employers are reaching out in desperation.

“What we’re seeing is this great divide of people just quitting their jobs and that’s new. I think last week alone 10 million people across the country quit their jobs and what’s being speculated is the new employees are getting paid more and old employees are being shorted,” she said.

Stevens said the goal is to host more career fairs to help businesses stay afloat. Their next Job fair is in two weeks. You can find more information, here.

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