Local Businesses Adapt to Uncertainty

Local Businesses Adapt to Uncertainty

Avery Kuligowski and Sydney Huffman

Covid-19 has affected the United States in numerous ways throughout the past year. One of the most substantial ways Covid has impacted Americans is through employment. It is no secret that the unemployment rate has been rising since March 2020 and continues to increase now. The unemployment rate fell to 6.9 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. Since March 11, 2020, when the World Health Organization officially declared a global pandemic outbreak, Covid-19 has ended thousands of jobs for unfortunate citizens all over the world. 

According to ABC News, last week, the largest number of unemployed workers, 709,000, reported jobless claims. On December 3rd, at 6:07 pm on ABC 5 Chicago News, reporters covered a story declaring that Illinois has the 5th slowest job recovery.

Jen Mohney, a Chiropractic Assistant at PWC (Premier Wellness Care) in Crystal Lake, expressed on November 21st in an interview that, “Thankfully COVID hasn’t affected us at PWC.However, Andrew (her husband) works in the restaurant business and he is not working as much due to the second closure and Tier 3 mitigations. 

Although they are both employed, Andrew lost one of his three jobs around November 20th when Illinois moved back to Tier 3. He was a server at the Village Squire. Jen quotes, “They actually closed down for an extended period of time in March and when summer rolled in, he did well working outside. Had it been over winter, it would have been tougher on our family.”

Jen happily expressed that PWC hasn’t had to deal with any unemployment as a whole. Additionally, PWC has welcomed a new doctor to the team and family, Dr. Spencer Surmont. 

Everyone can discuss the drawbacks that we have all faced during these hard times, but there is something positive that Jen has learned from the pandemic with her company: “Hmmm, I would say for us, it brought us together even more in our beliefs that the body heals itself and we haven’t had anxiety or worry over the pandemic.”

As devastating as it sounds, many small businesses have been able to flourish with the extra supporters who understand the importance of small businesses. Hoffman Orthodontics is one of those small businesses. When asked how the business has been affected by Covid, Haley Lang, an orthodontic assistant at Hoffman, spoke about new rules regarding no family with the patient except for special occasions, no high speed suctions, and correct protection. The business is very safe with precautions such as masks, hand sanitizer, and patients wearing the proper protection (masks). This is likely why it is still able to function so successfully in these times. 

Though it is unclear when businesses will go back to normal, local businesses have found a way to adapt to the changes. With 2021 right around the corner, support local businesses in McHenry County, such as Hoffman Orthodontics and PWC. Every customer counts and will help each business strive towards success throughout these difficult and uncertain times. Working together as a community, rather than against one another, is key to overcoming this pandemic.