Allow 2 Young Black Entrepreneurs to continue operating their business
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Hello, my name is Robert Green, and my business partner is Jordan Johnson. We are co-owners of Hairitage Barbershop LLC and Platters LLC, located at 7402 Drexel Rd. Philadelphia, PA. I have been a resident in the Overbrook Park community for nearly 20 years. Jordan and I established our barbershop in May of 2014, and It has been very successful ever since. We have operated for 4 years without major incident, and we are the youngest black business owners in the neighborhood.
We recently expanded our brand, and purchased a food truck that we named Platters. The goal of our food business is to occupy the area outside of our barbershop, with hopes to service our barbershop customers, neighboring businesses and all members of the community. Our mission is to establish a family oriented business that displays great customer service, provides great food, creates job opportunities, and serves as a inspiration for young adults, both male and female.
We plan to achieve this by sponsoring local events, sports teams and back to school initiatives. We spent countless hours, time, and money to enhance the appearance of the truck, and the appearance of our staff so that we represented the image of our community correctly.
We also spent countless time and money on obtaining our business licensing and permits, in order to legally operate and serve at our intended location. We were granted approval to operate by the City of Philadelphia’s Licensing and Inspection agency on April 25, 2018. And after being open for only 6 days, the Licensing and Inspection agency came out to our truck to inform us that a legislation was recently passed that prohibited vending at that location, signed on May 2, 2018, and that it would be our last day of operation. Our business was completely crippled.
We then sought support from our community leaders, and received a great deal of support from State Representative Morgan Cephas, 19th District police captain John Stanford, District Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr., Town Watch President Darryl Day, and Haverford Avenue Business Association President William Nasir. They all were very understanding of our situation, eager to address our concerns, and were all in agreement that new legislation should be passed pending final approval from Overbook Park Civic Association.
The obstacle that we now face is that some of the individuals in the community expressed concerns that our truck will bring negative traffic to the community and spoke out against us re-establishing our business. Most of their concerns were greatly appreciated and legitimate, in which we too shared some of the same concerns. We addressed most of those concerns by providing solutions, and means of safety options to deter loitering and potential crime. We are installing cameras at our businesses to instill safety and security for us, as well as our neighbors. We stand for so much more than a barbershop and food truck. The last thing we want as business owners, parents and role models, is to promote negativity, or create something that would bring harm to our community or families.
Our mission is to gain the approval of the Overbrook Park Civic Association to support the modification of the legislation, and show them that we have a great deal of support from the community to do so.
Please sign our petition, so that a modification to the law be passed, so we can continue to operate and be a positive inspiration to the youth. Thank you
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