Seattle Restaurants United: Save Restaurants & Bars, Save the City

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Restaurants and bars are central to the soul of any city. Here in Seattle, our community’s diversity, values, and spirit are expressed through the take-out counters, fine dining establishments, and late-night spots that unite us. Each of these is a stage for memories, big and small: birthdays, anniversaries, networking, catching up with friends, chance meetings.  

The COVID 19 pandemic is crippling communities around the world. Our local restaurants and bars are doing their part to stem the spread of the virus by shuttering their doors as we all endure this unprecedented challenge. Without significant and immediate financial relief, many restaurants and bars in Seattle will not reopen afterward.

When our restaurants and bars suffer, so do farmers, distilleries, and other suppliers. As do property owners, who will struggle with revenue loss and trying to lease vacant spaces in an economic downturn. Large corporate franchises, not locally-owned small businesses, will have the upper hand in this new real estate market. If these spaces remain empty, we risk becoming a city of boarded up storefronts. Our beloved retail/restaurant community will change dramatically. Seattle’s soul and spirit will be shattered, damaging a brand that makes our city a top choice for a talented resident workforce, scholars, and business and leisure tourism.

Seattle Restaurants United is a coalition of local restaurants and bars urging City, State, and Federal legislators to boldly protect our businesses and employees from destitution, thus protecting our community from losing a vital part of itself.

No one enters the service industry to get rich. We do it for love of food, love of craft, and love of you, the people. We work miracles on a tight budget, stretching thin margins for maximum community benefit. Seattle-area restaurants and bars annually contribute $3+ billion to our economy and support a broad network of other economies through supply chains. Seattle restaurants’ net products and contributions are almost 100% local. Investing in us is a direct investment in the people that live and work in our region, and it’s the people, not large corporations, who will suffer the most from this pandemic. Right now, the National Restaurant Association (NRA) is lobbying Congress for stimulus funding, but the NRA primarily represents large restaurant chains and foodservice corporations. The voice of independent restaurants and bars is not being heard. Please raise your voice to save our local restaurants and bars, and the many employed by them. 

For Employee and Owner/Operator resources, please visit our website:
www.seattlerestaurantsunited.com/resources