Trisha Stewart, owner of Barbarella Beauty in Ambler, was blindsided when the coronavirus pandemic forced her to close her salon, writes Erin Arvedlund for The Philadelphia Inquirer.
When the order came, she laid off her eleven employees until the salon can reopen and told them to file for unemployment.
“We’re being told by the state to give your employees two weeks’ pay,” said Stewart. “It was suggested. But how can we do that? We have no funds.”
With the county office shut down and nobody to talk to, she decided to take matters into her own hands. First, she filed a claim for business interruption insurance.
Then she asked everybody involved in her business, including lenders, vendors, her mortgage banker, and utilities, to defer asking for payment.
“I’m asking for forbearance,” she said. “It’s a lengthy process, but it gives us some breathing room.”
With her husband in sales, which has also dried up, she also put a hold on autopay for various services, like Comcast and Verizon cable and phone service.
Another step she is taking is pursuing a loan through the Small Business Administration.
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