You’ve heard the phrase over and over — "We’re living in a time of uncertainty" — and in times of uncertainty, people want answers. They want support. They want guidance, and this is no different with restaurant owners.
“It’s brought the restaurant industry to its knees. It really has,” explained Brad Griffin, the president of the Montana Restaurant Association (MRA).
Throughout this pandemic, MRA has been trying to help restaurants stay afloat.
“The biggest challenge has just been helping restaurants understand the federal legislation that has passed, the CARES Act. I made it my job to learn that act very well and explain it to our members in an easy and concise way so that they can access funds to their business,” Griffin said.
And for restaurant owners, the association has played a huge part in the road to recovery.
“We actually opened this restaurant March 16th of 2000, and we closed it down for COVID March 16, 2020. From day one, we were talking regularly with the association with the board members, sending information out to all of our membership. We had an audience with the governor. We had an audience with our representatives so that they were reaching out to us,” said restaurant owner Roth Jordan.
But for restaurants, there’s still a long road ahead.
“There’s still work to be done, but I think overall very happy to be doing business in Montana compared to other parts of the country. I think that progressing to Phase 3 as quickly as possible and as quickly as socially responsible is the main thing that we need to stay focused on now,” explained restaurant owner Blane Woodfin.
The association can’t tell the future and they have no idea how long this will continue. But they do say they’ll be here for their restaurants for as long as it takes.