Small businesses across the United States are shutting down. Many are not coming back. But some business owners are standing up to their state’s lockdown orders. They’re opening up anyway.
“This is our only source of income. So shutting down is just not an option,” said Justin Windish, owner of Mad J’s BBQ.
“You do have to stand up and defend your rights or else they’re gonna trample on you,” said Erik Kiilunen, founder of All Business is Essential.
One single mom of six kids decided to open indoor dining to support her family. But she says Michigan state is fining her over $30,000 for doing so. She says it’s not right.
“We have 30 employees who are willing to work. They’re not afraid to work. And they’re being asked not to work. And I don’t think that’s right,” said Amy Heikkinen, owner of Café Rosetta.
She compares the lockdown orders to domestic abuse, which Heikkinen is all too familiar with.
“I’m familiar with abuse. Don’t do this, don’t do that. I want to survive as a business, as a person. I want to support my family,” said Heikkinen.
The founder of All Business is Essential supports Heikkinen. They’ve already raised $50,000 for the legal battle ahead. He says small businesses need to stand together.