Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb met with small business owners to discuss what they need to thrive

Published: May. 23, 2022 at 3:43 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Melissa Khory knows first-hand what it’s like to run a small business during a pandemic.

“The one thing about COVID is it’s an equalizer... so it wasn’t just one person going through this, everyone is going through it,” said Khory.

She owns the butcher shop Saucisson.

“Owning a small business is hard enough and then you add this where you never know what’s going to happen the next day whether you can stay open and also watching the community around you suffering,” said Khory.

Khory and other small business owners from around Cleveland sat down with Mayor Justin Bibb on Monday to discuss what they need from the city to help them thrive.

“Sitting down with the mayor and his staff and telling folks kind of what we see every day... and his team to do better for all of us.”

Khory says one of the big things she wants the city to invest more into neighborhoods like Slavic Village. That’s where her butcher shop is.

“Making sure we’re not just hitting the fancy stuff... where are those gaps and identifying those gaps and really lifting people up and that’s the main goal that should be looked at,” said Khory.

Khory isn’t the only business owner who spoke with the mayor.

Will Hollingsworth, the owner of Prosperity Social Club, says his biggest concern has been staffing.

He hopes the city will invest in more work training programs.

“Finding young, raw people.. people who are interested in this industry... teach them all the things they need to know to be able to launch their careers while continuing to grow our businesses,” said Hollingsworth.

Meanwhile, Khory says more conversations like this need to happen so local small businesses can thrive.

“Small businesses are the backbone of every city and state and across the country,” said Khory.

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