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After weeks of waiting for Federal government officials to step in and offer necessary aid to bars and restaurants during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, a group of restaurant and bar owners have banded together to create an organization that operates with their best interests in mind.
And they are inviting restaurant owners, bar owners and industry employees to become members, share their stories and lend their voices to fight for collective action.
The Milwaukee Independent Restaurant Coalition (MIRC) was founded, and is currently represented by Daniel Jacobs of JVR Hospitality Group; John Revord of Boone & Crockett, The Cooperage and Snack Boys; Pam Ronnei of Strange Town and Jordan Burich of Voyager.
As stated on their website, the organization aspires to:
- Provide a forum for representatives from independently owned restaurants and bars in the Milwaukee area to collaborate and communicate about industry issues.
- Create a central repository to collate and disseminate information about government and nonprofit benefits and grants available to restaurant and bar workers.
- Unite the voices of the people who own and work in independent restaurants and bars to identify common needs and opportunities for legislative change.
- Advocate for the establishment of a reliable social and economic safety net that can support Milwaukee restaurants and bars and their workers during times of economic or environmental crisis.
"Our current focus is to unify the many passionate and thoughtful voices out there into one collective movement," says Revord. "So right now, more than anything, we want fellow owners to join up and share their voices."
"The federal response has not been enough," he adds. "The Wisconsin assembly has failed to push any meaningful policy regarding our out of work staff. They have been slow to act, slow to respond and lackluster in their ability to care for those who desperately need it. So we are seeking state legislative changes that not only help keep our doors open in this crisis, but to help prevent this from happening in future crises."
You can follow the Milwaukee Independent Restaurant Coalition on Instagram. To sign on as a member, visit mkeirc.com.
Lori Fredrich (Lo) is an eater, writer, wonderer, bon vivante, traveler, cook, gardener and girlwonder. Born and raised in the Milwaukee area, she has tried to leave many times, but seems to be drawn to this quirky city that smells of beer and alewives.
Some might say that she is a little obsessed with food. Lo would say she is A LOT obsessed with food. After all, she has been cooking, eating and enjoying food for decades and has no plans to retire anytime soon.
Lo's recipes and writing have been featured in a variety of publications including GO: Airtran Inflight Magazine, Cheese Connoisseur, Cooking Light, Edible Milwaukee, Milwaukee Magazine and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, as well as on the blog Go Bold with Butter, the web site Wisconsin Cheese Talk, and in the quarterly online magazine Grate. Pair. Share.