The coronavirus pandemic and social distancing are impacting small businesses across the area, including D.C.-based Compass Coffee. This story was first seen on Popville.
The company is closing all of its downtown D.C. locations, leaving only a handful of coffee shops open.
Two Virginia Compass Coffee locations are staying open on Wilson Boulevard. Employees at the closed locations received notice last night and the shops were closed Tuesday.
On Instagram, Compass says:
• COVID-19 has been devastating for Compass
• Business is down 90 percent
• Laid off majority of baristas now eligible for unemployment benefits
The post goes on to say the small business has been struggling for the last two weeks — even coming up with projects for employees to work on but they, “simply ran out of work and could not afford to pay people without things for them to do.”
Compass saying they are opting to make this one deep cut with hopes of rebuilding in the future.
Meanwhile, Compass is not alone.
In downtown Alexandria on King Street, often considered an epicenter of mom and pop shops, it was empty for the most part Tuesday.
The stretch has one of the most concentrated clusters of locally owned businesses in the country, but with few, if any patrons, many businesses will struggle to stay open, especially under Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s new guidance prohibiting any gathering exceeding ten people.
Popville is reporting Compass laid off 180 of its 200 employees.
Governor Northam says the state is waiving the usual two week waiting period to receive unemployment benefits.