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  4.  » The Weekly Pulse: Getting New York City Businesses Back on its Feet

New York City gradually began reopening last Monday, June 8th after months of stay-home ordered lock down. The reopening is scheduled to transpire in phases and is a significant turning point as it gives us all a chance to test our new world skills which should include practicing social distancing, safety precautions, and lending a helping hand to those in need.

We are currently in phase one which includes the following industries: construction, agriculture, forestry, fishing, hunting, retail (limited to curbside or in-store pickup or drop off), manufacturing, and wholesale trade. Midtown Manhattan has cautiously reawakened while other industries are eagerly awaiting their turn to re-engage in this vibrant City.

Assistance and guidance for New York City residents and businesses impacted by COVID-19 include:

  • New York City Small Business Services: offers daily webinars to help you learn about a range of assistance available for small businesses in NYC impacted by COVID-19.

  • New York City Reopening Schedule: consult New York City’s Business Reopening Guide for more information.

  • Support Local Small Businesses: Many local businesses were forced to close while others have been operating with restricted hours and work conditions. If you have a favorite business and have the means to do so, consider purchasing a gift certificate to use in the future. You can also order from a local restaurant for dinner, with many offering a curbside pick-up for take-out orders, as well as expanded delivery.

  • Tipping During the Pandemic: COVID-19 and it’s economic fallout has reshaped in the etiquette of giving gratuities. Essential workers are delivering groceries and meals for services like Instacart, DoorDash, GrubHub, Uber Eats, and much more are getting into situations where they’re putting their personal health at risk. We have to remember that when we’re tipping. For pharmacy delivery: $5 or a pizza order: $20. For grocery delivery, consider upping your tip to 15-20 percent of your total order.

  • Support Those Who Support You: As service businesses such as hair salons, nail salons, coffee shops, and much more have restarted in some states, they have lost tips and revenue since shuttering 3 months ago. At-home and childcare workers like caregivers, house cleaners, dog walkers and day care providers warrant similar consideration. Every one of these services and businesses will be working even harder to make sure safety precautions are in place for everyone, so tip these workers well.

  • Leave a Little Something for Mail Carriers & Package Delivers: USPS staff are prohibited by law from accepting cash tips (or checks or gift cards), But postal carriers have been among the most visible essential workers during the pandemic. Your mail carrier might appreciate a bottle of water or a little snack. The same approach can be applied to FedEx and UPS drivers ( who are also barred from taking tips and payments from customers). Be kind and leave a basket at your front door with some options if they want to take them. Just something that says, you care and you thank them.

  • You can consult NYC United Against Coronavirus, a constantly-updated Google Doc filled with tons of useful links to various aid efforts around the city.

Helping Businesses Impacted by Vandalism

  • State and city officials have announced that relief will be provided to New York businesses that have been impacted by vandalism that has taken place throughout the state. The city will not only help with grants and direct cash assistance, according to Mayor Bill De Blasio, but will also provide “legal help, help getting their insurance. Whatever help to get them back on their feet.”

  • If you’re a victim of vandalism and have issues with your insurance company, please go to the Department of Financial Services website for assistance.

New York is known for its strength and resilience. Let’s step out of our comfort zone and continue to lend a hand to our neighbors, engage in our communities and support our local businesses to continue to thrive in this beautiful state we call New York.

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