While most of us lament not being able to enjoy our favorite restaurants or pubs like it's 2019, imagine what the hospitality staff at those joints are going through. Sure we might miss our favorite booth, but they're missing a paycheck. There is a glimmer of light at the end of this stressful tunnel for those in the service industry. According to an article from MLive, furloughed service industry employees could be eligible for a one-time $500 payment to help them make it through. The Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association has allocated a $2.5 million grant to handle the payments, so there is a limited number of checks that will be dispersed. Application for the payments begins today, Tuesday, September 22nd at 8:00 am.

Even though many Southwest Michigan restaurants are back open, they're not functioning at full capacity, which means they haven't been able to bring their full staff back on board. Some restaurants across the country have started tip jars for their furloughed employees as a way to help them through. Others have started their own GoFundMe pages. Remember, if you are venturing out into the wild world of sit-down dining/drinking that these last several months have been hard on all of us, and have affected certain industries more deeply than others. Bring an extra bit of patience with you, and remember your service staff is putting themselves on the front lines every day. Let them know about the $500 allocation from the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association, and we'll help each other get through this.



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