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Non-essential businesses staying in business

Writing and Graphics by Micky Flores-Nieves

As all are well aware, not all businesses during this harsh time are open for business. Businesses that are considered essential by the government are open including grocery stores, emergency services (hospitals, police stations, etc.), waste, and a lot more businesses listed on the Washington State Government official website. Now, some may wonder what are the “nonessential” businesses doing to stay in business? I work at Yelm Cinemas, a nonessential business at this time. I myself and many other employees were given the opportunity to work during this time doing curbside order and pickup of popcorn and candy at our location for the first time ever. My general manager Noah Aden had announced the occurrence of this event on the Yelm Cinemas Facebook page and the community response was astounding. Here is what some of my coworkers had to say about it.

Luis Almora: “I’m absolutely mind blown that a lot of people are willing to support our business from shutting down and I’m grateful that our community actually cares for us this is the first job that I [have] had where the community cares about an individual business.”

Janessa Sutton: “A lot of people showed up to support. There was around 400 cars that were willing to support and help out the business.”

Alex Ramirez: “The community response was very positive despite the long wait time, all the customers said that they just wanted to support us and that they like our popcorn a lot.”

Britney Alvarez: “A lot of the community actually came and supported us during this time, which I thought was pretty sweet.”

I for one was also impressed about the impact Yelm Cinemas has made in the Yelm community over the years and to see everyone come in to support the movie theater I have worked in for 2 years was truly a sight to see. This event was by far a success but we plan to do this almost twice a month since we aren’t considered an essential business, so we don’t do this everyday. Personally it sucks working in an unessential business at this time because money is an essential to have to buy necessities such as food, water and to pay bills. Some of my coworkers had similar things to say being a nonessential worker.

Alex Ramirez: “It feels a little bad to be a nonessential worker. This is a job where families come to have fun and spend time together. In other words, this job creates happiness and I feel happiness should be essential in everyone’s life but safety is always more important and without that there can’t be any happiness.”

Janessa Sutton: “It’s a little scary realizing being a nonessential worker especially realizing that in times like theseI won’t have a job or a source of income.”

Britney Alvarez: “It sucks being a nonessential worker because I love working. It’s also my only form of getting money for school and other things so it kinda sucks to not have that income.”

Now, this event is something different for the community and for us employees at Yelm Cinemas, but I think they can all agree with me that this is fun and it means a lot that people love, and support us. Sure, I work at an unessential business to the government, but I work at an essential business to the community and I’m proud of it.