What it means to be “Essential”

A Letter to Nashville’s Small Businesses affected by Covid 19

Dear Nashville –

It has been nearly three months of sheltering in place, watching Music City tourism drop off, seeing local companies struggle to stay solvent and still pay their employees, witnessing families experience job insecurity and scramble to cover childcare and household bills. 

When we all emerge from the health crises and economic collapse that has been the Coronavirus, we may find that the small business landscape in Nashville has been forever changed.  For now, we wait and we wonder. Will all the changes be setbacks? Will the impacts on our community provide opportunities for Nashville-based professionals to pull together? Can we move forward with choices that get us all back to business by supporting shared revitalization and success?

Pro-Care, like so many of the small businesses impacted by Covid-19, has been severely tested since the pandemic took hold.  Our team has had to invent a whole new way of operating.  We have implemented practices to protect the safety of our employees as well as our clients. And, like many of our local industry partners, we have taken a huge financial hit. 

Although it may not feel like it, our city is lucky.  Mayor Cooper’s “Safer at Home” order, which was put in place on March 24, 2020, asked all nonessential businesses to shutter for 14 days.  Ultimately that order has been extended to 10 weeks.  Thanks to the Mayor’s foresight and the cooperation of our citizens, we have enjoyed greater safety and better health than many cities our size.  But we’ve had to sacrifice needed income for necessary security.

Local businesses on the “Essential” List have continued to operate through the “Safer at Home” order, but at a loss. Among these, laundry and professional cleaning services, construction and design providers, and home and business cleaning and maintenance providers, have limped through the shut down and are counting on looser restrictions for an economic rebound.  While Pro-Care has continued to serve Nashville these past few months, we have also realized, more clearly than ever, that it is thanks to the loyalty of our clients and professional partners that we have been able to keep our doors open.

Another thing we’ve recognized in this era of Covid-19 is that, no matter what labels are applied to our local businesses, we are all “Essential.”  We supply employees with income and healthcare and their families with security and necessities.  We insure that citizens and companies get vital services, that tourists and locals enjoy hospitality and entertainment, that homeowners can pay for groceries, utilities and housewares.  We provide the healthy with protection, and the sick with care.  All of us contribute to the sense of community that is life in Nashville. We perform best when industry competition insures excellent customer service. We benefit when our businesses support a local economy that shares resources and income with our citizens. We are fed by each other’s success.

Pro-Care is reaching out to the local companies of Nashville. We need you back on this wall.  We are eager to reconnect with you and serve the public with you. To send folks your way and to take care of the folks you send to us.  For those that have enjoyed more security than others, carry us a little longer while we recover our momentum.  Every small business is an essential business. We are proud to partner with each and every one of you. We are thrilled to be celebrating our 25 years of participation with you in the Big success story of our remarkable “Small” town. 

Get Well Soon, friends.  Nashville isn’t the same without you. 

Essentially Yours, the Folks at Pro-Care

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/guidance-small-business.html

https://www.forbes.com/sites/danestangler/2020/03/17/how-do-we-help-small-business-during-covid-19-crisis/

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