SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WHSM) -- Nadim's Mediterranean Restaurant & Grill had to cut its staff and adjust their hours to stay open for takeout amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Governor Charlie Baker extended the stay-at-home advisory and for non-essential business closures until Monday, May 4.
Western Mass News spoke with the local restaurant on how they plan to survive off of takeout.
With only being allowed to do takeout, Owner Nadim Kashouh had to lay off 27 employees. Now he is down to answering the phone himself and taking orders.
“At this point, I feel helpless that I don’t know what to do with them besides sending them to unemployment and having them collect it. Hopefully, that should be enough to carry them over for another six weeks,” Kashouh said.
With the governor’s announcement Tuesday afternoon, Kashouh is not surprised by the timeline.
“It is what it is. And I think they’re going to have to follow suit on the federal level. So I can say I saw this one coming. They’re going to have to protect us, and this is the only way it is to keep us in place,” he said.
Some other adjustments the restaurant made were the hours. During the week they’re open 11:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Then, they close for two hours and reopen back up at 4:30 p.m. Doors close again at 7:30 p.m.
“We need to keep everything under control on my end just to keep the doors open. Keep everything flowing where it should be,” he noted.
There are spots for buyers to stand to keep social distance when picking up food.
The chairs where people once dined in are flipped upside down on the tables.
Kashouh said he is prepared to stay open through the extended non-essential business closure.
“At this rate, with what we’re doing as far as takeout, curbside, and delivery, we will be okay,” he said.
Kashouh says when he can have customers dine-in again, he plans to have an hour lunch with his employees where they all can have food together as one family.