There is still no timeline for when indoor dining may resume, and in the meantime restaurant owners have been left reeling as profits take a nosedive and the rules for outdoor dining continue to change.
NY1’s Roma Torre spoke with Amanda Cohen, the owner of Dirt Candy, a vegetarian restaurant on Manhattan's Lower East Side. She recently testified before the House of Representatives' Small Business Committee. She said she was grateful for the opportunity to tell the story of independent restaurants.
"There are 500,000 of us in the country, and we are all suffering," Cohen said. "We are sort of this really unique situation where we don't have enough access to capital, and we don't have to loans and debt. We also cannot take on anymore loans or debt while we are struggling."
Cohen also said that without relief from the federal government, independent restaurants will be forced to close at a rapid pace, upending the lives of millions. Despite Cohen implementing outdoor dining at her Manhattan restaurant she says her profits are down 75 percent.
Cohen is urging people to contact their representatives in Congress to demand relief for independent restaurants by supporting the Restaurants Act. She said people can do so at saverestaurants.com.