COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Local salons and barbershops are financially depleted and some won’t be able to open their doors again even when the coronavirus pandemic subsides.
Barber Al Edmondson, a well-known Columbus community activist, says he has been in touch with independent barbershop and salon owners around the country.
“There are a lot of owners just thinking about closing down, period,” Edmondson said.
For many of them, rent is too high and the promised Small Business Administration loans are still weeks away. Edmondson says creditors are nervous.
“I have a small loan out and they said we are just going to give you four weeks,” he said. “We are on week two.”
Barber Kelly McFarland was in the process of moving his shop to Reed Road when the pandemic hit. He has four barbers who will be working in his shop as independent contractors, so SBA loans may not help them.
“I’m anxious to see because I’ve never been in this,” McFarland said. “In 42 years, I never thought any of us in the service industry would have to stay home.”
Edmondson has set up a GoFund me page through a non-profit organization to raise support funds for stylists, barbers, nail technicians, skin experts and massage therapists. You can find it here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/odyssey-project.