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Adopt a service industry worker FB page emerges in Quad Cities

TV6 spoke with a restaurant worker in Illinois on what this could mean for them and how the financial impacts of the restaurant industry have led to a new group.
Published: Dec. 21, 2020 at 6:17 PM CST
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QUAD CITIES (KWQC) - Congress has agreed to a new stimulus package that would include direct payments to some Americans.

TV6 spoke with a restaurant worker in Illinois on what this could mean for them and how the financial impacts of the restaurant industry have led to a new group. The $900 billion COVID relief plan would include additional funds for unemployment benefits and PPP loans, as well as $600 direct payments to most individuals.

“I would say most of us are surviving,” said Amanda Spengler, a bartender and manager at Galena Brewing Company Moline Ale House. “$600 check doesn’t really go very far. It’s a matter of picking and choosing what bills to pay because you really can’t pay all of them.”

The restaurant industry took a hit this year with the changes impacting many service worker’s livelihoods. For Spengler, who’s been in the service industry since she was a teen, it changed many aspects.

“Your customers become kind of like your family when you work in this industry. So I would say that’s probably the hardest part is the distance that has been wedged in between us,” she said. “It’s affected me in a social aspect and it’s affected me in a financial aspect, and, you know, it’s just trying to figure out where to go from here.”

A community came together and created a Facebook page called “Adopt a QC Service Industry Worker”. Spengler said she saw another group in a different city start something similar and thought it would be great to bring to the Quad Cities, especially for those in Illinois. The state is still under Tier 3 mitigations.

“The thought was if we could start this page and invite people that aren’t on the service industry, side of things, maybe they have a little bit that they want to help with. Maybe they know someone personally that they’ve met at a restaurant or a bar and they could do something nice for them,” she said, “whether it’s send them 20 bucks to help with a bill or buy their child something off their Amazon wishlist, I just wanted it to be a good thing where we could all come together and help each other and try to take a little bit of the stress of the holidays off of each other’s shoulders.”

Spengler said she’s going to enjoy the magic of the holiday season.

“Even though there’s been so much hardships for people this year, I try to focus on the little things, and the things that are going right instead of all the things that are going wrong.”

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