I built a career based on the hospitality business but have now been laid off twice due to the pandemic. Like so many in our community, I am confused as to why we are being punished for something we did not do. We have followed the state’s guidelines yet are now suffering in ways we never thought possible. We in the restaurant/hospitality industry are close to losing the life we have come to love in Santa Barbara. The pressure on our local economy will hurt us for many years to come.
It is normal for individuals to want to socialize and spent time outside their homes. We offer an outlet to switch off for the day and experience something you cannot get at home. I for one am tired of being cooped up in my home. I would like to be a productive part of the community, not sit idly by and watch the destruction.
Other counties in our “region” are allowing outdoor dining, but Santa Barbara is not. Why are our politicians not stepping up to see that we can open safely again? If stricter rules were in place, we would all adhere to them to try to make our community safe while still enjoying a little time outside the home.
I understand this is a crisis and too many people have died, but those in elected office should consider making better decisions for the health of an industry they too undoubtedly enjoy(ed). I would be happy to consult on a board that would take these considerations in mind.