Business owners in Saskatoon are feeling the pressure to keep the community safe while trying to keep their businesses afloat.
Tisha Paget opened her coffee shop D’Lish by Tish about seven years ago. She has noticed significantly fewer customers coming in over the past week during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It was anticipated and I totally respect people’s choice to stay at home and I encourage social distancing,” Paget said.
Paget is choosing to keep her shop open and is trying her best to give employees enough hours.
“We’re a family here. I have almost 30 people working for me and I have opened it up to them if they want to stay home. It’s very much up to them,” Paget said.
Other businesses have made the tough choice to temporarily close.
Ryde YXE has two spin studio locations with over 30 instructors among other staff. Precautionary measures, including spending extra time sanitizing, was taken last week before choosing to close down on Monday.
“It’s going to be that social distancing and reducing group gatherings that are ultimately going to be what’s the best decision for us moving forward,” Ryde YXE co-owner Shaina Lynden said.
Lynden still needs to evaluate if and how her employees will be compensated.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Monday the Canadian government will be putting $10 billion towards supporting businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Paget worries it won’t help struggling businesses in time.
“I would hope that it would pick up some of the shortfalls of the sales but you can never recapture what’s lost,” Paget said.
“By the time that rolls out, you don’t know how you’re going to do until that comes.”
Both Paget and Lynden are staying optimistic and know innovation is important when faced with challenges.
Ryde YXE is exploring sharing workouts online while the two studios are closed. D’Lish by Tish will offer a drive-thru and delivery service starting Wednesday.
Confused about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Health officials say the risk is low for Canadians but warn that this could change quickly. They caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are asked to self-isolate for 14 days in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. And if you get sick, stay at home.
For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.