How local businesses are dealing with the closure due to COVID-19

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WWLP) – Governor Baker has ordered all nonessential businesses to remain closed until May 4 which has caused a struggle for some local businesses.

Bentley’s Barbershop in Springfield is one local business that has been dealing with this closure.

“The only way I get paid is if I show up and open the doors. When you have to close the doors there’s no money coming in,” Bentley’s Barber Shop owner Evan Nyman said.

The order that began a week ago was set to expire on April 7. The extension comes as state health officials are expected to see a surgeon the number of cases within the next two weeks. Like many other small business owners, Nyman has received numerous calls from customers so it’s hard to say no to his regular as he understands why these orders have been put in place.

“My phone hasn’t stopped ringing and it’s unfortunate because I have a little one at the house and I don’t want to jeopardize him or anyone else just for a haircut,” Nyman said.

Although Bentley’s will be able to resume business once these orders are lifted, other business owners and workers are concerned about their future.

Chris Carlozzi, State Director of the National Federation of Independent Businesses told 22News, small business owners with fewer than 500 workers can apply for the Payroll Protection Program. This program offers loans that can assist with operational costs.

Though this may be a time of year for some businesses others are looking at it as a chance to pay it forward.

Basia Bel, owner of Vivid Hair Salon in Westfield has been collecting donations for masks for local hospitals and for gift cards.

The gift cards will eventually be given to healthcare workers for free so the salon can cater to their beauty needs once these closures are lifted.

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