Start creating a million different accounts with health care networks across Colorado and compulsively clicking “refresh” on pharmacy websites: You’re finally (almost!) eligible to get the jab! Restaurant workers will eligible to receive COVID vaccines starting Friday, March 19, so here’s hoping there’s a quick, painless doctor’s appointment in your very near future that will help us all forward on the path towards normalcy. (Here’s another website to search for an appointment in addition to the spots listed below.)
In other news, tomorrow’s been designated Dine Out to Help Out Day in Colorado; there’s a $700 million Colorado state stimulus package in the works; and if you live in Denver, there are monies in the Colorado Restaurant Foundation’s Angel Relief Fund set aside for you.
The following information comes from the Colorado Restaurant Association’s March 9 through March 12 newsletters. Sign up to receive the full versions here. And take a gander at its Coronavirus Resource Center and COVID-19 Reopening Resources for general info.
Restaurant Workers Eligible for the COVID-19 Vaccine on March 19
Governor Polis announced March 12 that phase 1B.4 — which includes restaurants — will be available to receive the COVID-19 vaccine starting on March 19. This is a two-day advance on the timeline originally proposed for phase 1B.4 in the State’s vaccine distribution plan. This news comes in light of increased shipments of the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. The Governor also announced that anticipated shipment amounts will allow for all adults in Colorado to be eligible for the vaccine by mid-April. We are encouraged to see this advance in the vaccination timeline both for our employees and for our communities at large. This news provides us with a clear path to increased capacity, hope for a strong summer for restaurants, and a way out of this awful crisis.
Watch the Governor’s press conference here.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) told us that they recommend restaurant workers sign up for the vaccine through a county or state vaccination site, a pharmacy, or through their provider. Employees are encouraged, but not required, to bring a pay stub with them to the appointment to confront any confusion at the appointment. During the press conference today, the State said that information to schedule an appointment at a state or county vaccination site will become available on March 17.
CDPHE also shared with us resources that industry workers can utilize in the interim to ensure that they are registered with the state and local public health agencies so that they can start the process as soon as phase 1B.4 opens to the industry. We encourage you to share these with your employees.
We have been having continued conversations with CDPHE regarding ways that we can streamline the vaccine distribution process specifically for restaurant workers. We will continue to send updated resources and guidance for the industry prior to the rollout date on March 19 and as we continue to navigate getting employees vaccinated.
Governor Polis Announces Preliminary Plan for State Stimulus Package
Today, Governor Polis and bipartisan leaders from both legislative chambers held a press conference to unveil the preliminary details of the $700 million state stimulus package. Although the legislation associated with each of these goals still needs to be released, we anticipate that the stimulus package will include funding for continued restaurant and bar sales tax relief, infrastructure and transportation, additional funds for the Energize Colorado fund, funding for broadband and other educational purposes, funds for the state Stock Show, and more.
We appreciate Governor Polis and the General Assembly members’ work on this stimulus package and are glad to see the state legislature is now considering the upcoming summer months for restaurants to continue to take advantage of the state sales tax program. This will allow more restaurants to take advantage of the tax relief as we expect to see decreased dining restrictions and a continuation of expanded outdoor patios in the coming months.
We know that this state stimulus will not be enough to pull restaurants back from the brink, and we will continue to advocate for the need for financial support and recovery programs at all levels of government. We will be monitoring the legislation associated with this stimulus program and will share new details as we know more.
To watch the conference, go here.
Denver Donates to Our Angel Relief Fund for Emergency Assistance Grant Program
We are excited to announce that the City of Denver has teamed up with the Colorado Restaurant Foundation (CRF) to fund an emergency assistance grant program for hospitality employees facing an unanticipated hardship. This specific grant was created to support Denver residents who were currently or previously employed in a Colorado restaurant or hotel for at least 90 days who are currently unemployed or underemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic or have experienced other negative economic impacts due to being diagnosed with COVID-19. CRF provides emergency assistance fund grants up to $500 for those that are unemployed or underemployed and $1,000 to those that have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
Note: Assistance shall be provided to eligible applicants regardless of the immigration status of the applicant. No identifying personal information will be given to the City of Denver for reporting or any other purpose.
The following individuals are eligible to receive a grant from this fund:
- Current residents of Denver.
- Recipients must be currently employed or must have been previously employed in a restaurant or hotel for at least 90 days since January 2020 and lost or reduced such employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- No recipient shall receive more than a total of $1,000 in CRF Angel Relief Funds grants during the 2021 calendar year, but you must reside in Denver.
- Note: The restaurant or hotel that you work or worked for does NOT need to be located in Denver.
For questions contact Courtney Baylie at the Colorado Restaurant Foundation at email@example.com or 303-885-3554.
Governor Polis Proclaims Tuesday, March 16, Dine Out to Help Out Day
The Colorado Restaurant Association reached out to Governor Polis to ask him to declare March 16 Dine Out to Help Out Day – and we are grateful to him for issuing Proclamation and supporting our efforts! On March 16, 2020, restaurants in Colorado were told they’d have to shut their doors due to COVID-19. To commemorate the great loss our industry has experienced through the past year, on March 16, 2021, we are asking the public to dine out, take out, or get delivery in observance of Dine Out to Help Out Day.
Join us and Governor Polis in encouraging your community to dine out, take out, or order delivery on Tuesday, March 16, to show their love for their local restaurants.
We have created graphics that you can share to your own platforms to help spread the word and ensure a large turnout celebrating restaurants.
Help Us Fight For Increased Capacity by Responding to Our March Impact Survey
As we approach the one-year milestone in this crisis, the Colorado Restaurant Association is collecting information on the economic impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak on the restaurant industry, as well as details on how anticipated legislative proposals will impact you. Data collected in this survey will specifically make a case to State legislators for shifting COVID-19 guidelines to offer restaurants a clear path to increased capacity. We also plan to use the data collected from this information in other state and local advocacy efforts, in recovery conversations across the State, and with the media. Please be assured that all information provided is anonymous and strictly confidential. If you are a restaurant operator with multiple restaurants in your organization, please consider completing a separate survey for each location. This will help provide us with data to analyze the impact on a city level. If you wish to only complete one survey, please choose your primary restaurant for this survey.
Please respond to the survey here.
Talk to us! Email your experiences (and thoughts, opinions, and questions—anything, really) to firstname.lastname@example.org.