Downtown Farmington and Oakland County work to provide local businesses with Re-Opening Toolkits

Photo credit: Jaki LeMenseGloves, masks, and hand sanitizer.

Touch-free digital thermometers, guidance documents, and social distancing stickers.

These are the tools of the trade for many a small business owner, no matter the industry, in these days of COVID-19.

As Michigan restaurants and retailers have begun to welcome customers back into their stores, entrepreneurs now have much more to worry about in addition to things like inventory and payroll.

Keeping both their employees and customers safe from the coronavirus has become a top priority.

In downtown Farmington, and across Oakland County, businesses have been given access to a valuable set of tools to do just that.

The Farmington Downtown Development Authority has begun to distribute the Oakland County Re-Opening Toolkit. Consisting of the aforementioned items above, as well as promotional re-opening posters, the Re-Opening Toolkits are available to Oakland County businesses with 50 employees or less.

"The whole [opening] process and the waiting period have been exhausting and quite stressful," says Larry Sallen, owner of Clothes Encounters of Farmington.

"With the proper safety measures in place and the support of the Farmington DDA, a re-opening tool kit was provided to local businesses. The kit contains many necessary items such as masks, gloves, a thermometer, and a disinfectant cleaner.

"With these items, I'm confident that our customers and guests will feel safe when patronizing our businesses."

Oakland County has prepared 10,000 Re-Opening Toolkits for distribution and each toolkit contains more than $400 in supplies.

Photo credit: Jaki LeMenseIn addition to the toolkits, Oakland County has provided more than $14 million in grant support for small businesses countywide, according to a release.

Given the uncertainties associated with re-opening this summer, how helpful has it been for the DDA and County to provide such resources?

"Certainly advantageous. Great communication between the DDA and what was happening," Sallen says.

"One less thing that I had to worry about by providing the necessary essentials."

Visit Downtown Farmington and Oakland County online for more information about receiving a Re-Opening Toolkit. Downtown Farmington has also launched a crowdfunding campaign to help raise funds for its downtown businesses.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

Read more articles by MJ Galbraith.

MJ Galbraith is a writer and musician living in Detroit. Follow him on Twitter @mikegalbraith.
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