Ways to Find and Give Help During the Coronavirus

lilys-rob.jpeg

Chef Rob Lam serving a canapé to co-owner Lily Lieu of Lily at the tablehopper pre-opening party. Photo: © tablehopper.com.

We are watching our communities struggle, suffer, and try to survive during this international crisis, and we’re all wondering how to help, or receive help. Here are some resources, articles, petitions, and more. Thanks for helping in any way you can, and if there is something you think I should add, please let me know! I will keep this post updated.

I said this in my other piece, but again, many restaurants, cafés, and bars/clubs are running a GoFundMe or virtual tip jar on Venmo or PayPal for their staff and survival. Contribute if and where you can. Ask a favorite venue how you can help if they haven’t posted anything.

You can help out hospitality workers in need by giving to any number of funds for service workers; check out this spreadsheet of support for food industry workers, with many mentioned in these articles and posts from Food & Wine, Punch, Cherry Bombe, and Eater. I have also seen this: Another Round Another Rally, a nonprofit financial resource for the hospitality industry.

The USBG keeps getting donations to the Bartender Emergency Assistance Program, you can donate or apply here.

And while you’re at it, please don’t forget our artists, performers, and workersBroke-Ass Stuart has this to say, and there is also the newly launched SF Bay Area Queer Nightlife Fund. DoTheBay has this roundup of ways to help the service and entertainment industry.

So many people are working hard to find solutions. If you’re in the F&B industry and have been affected by this changing market, again, you can hit up this amazing list of resources that just might save your bacon. You might also be eligible for unemployment benefits, so take it where you can get it.

Are you an employer? The Office of Economic & Workforce Development has created a webpage with resources for San Francisco employers and employees concerning the COVID-19 outbreak. You can also donate. Watch this space for more.

Restaurateurs should also check into the Small Business Association’s Disaster Loan Assistance program to see if it can help through the lean times.

Still want to help but don’t have the scratch? Signing petitions costs nothing but your time. Urge Mayor Breed to set up a fund for interest-free loans for small- to medium-sized businesses so they can keep the lights on, and reach higher to demand government around the country to offer unemployment benefits, waive taxes, and temporarily bend permits to allow businesses to adapt. Come on, it’ll only take a sec.

The National Restaurant Association has posted this petition to Tell Congress to Support Restaurants and Our Employees! Please sign it and pass it on—it’s getting some momentum!

Call your Representatives and Senators and demand that independent restaurants are part of the federal stimulus plan. Call 202-224-3121 to be connected to the Capitol switchboard.

Got a car? Sign up to volunteer to deliver food to people in (really serious) need with Project Open Hand and Meals on Wheels. Upside: There’s, like, no traffic out there.

However you cope during these difficult times, stay safe, stay informed (here too), check in on folks, and wash your damn hands.

Props again to my pal Sean Timberlake for helping me with this piece.