Thread: OWS hurting business
November 2nd, 2011, 06:55 AM #1
OWS hurting businessA New York City cafe cut its staff by nearly 25 percent last week because of lost business due to the ongoing Occupy Wall Street protests, the cafe's owner told FoxNews.com.
Marc Epstein, owner of the Milk Street Cafe at 40 Wall Street in lower Manhattan, said he had to cut 21 of the 97 members of his staff on Thursday and Friday after seeing sales plummet by 30 percent in the six weeks since the protests began. He's also been forced to slash the restaurant operating hours, moving up his closing time from 9 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays.
The incessant noise and police activity aside, Epstein said the biggest obstacle to his business has been the ubiquitous New York police barricades surrounding Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan.
"It's not only a physical impediment, it's a psychological impediment," Epstein told FoxNews.com. "You look down Wall Street now, and it looks like it's under siege. So, people who have to walk down Wall Street don't walk down Wall Street. It used to be a beautiful pedestrian mall, and now it's not -- it's ugly."
If the barricades are not removed, Epstein said he "cannot see" how his business could sustain itself. The eatery, which opened in June, is a $4 million venture and is an expansion of the Boston restaurant he and his wife opened decades earlier.
"It's my first venture in New York and my last venture in New York," he said.Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing
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