El Meson temporarily shuts down as state unemployment numbers rise

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Unemployment claims continue to skyrocket in Ohio. More local businesses are temporarily shutting down, sending increased people to look for help. 

That includes employees at El Meson in West Carrollton.

“It’s been a rollercoaster,” said Bill Castro, general manager at the restaurant.  

Owners decided to temporarily shut down the restaurant to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

“Every course that we’ve taken has been keeping at the forefront our responsibilities and that means to our customers, to our staff and to our family,” said Castro.

El Meson started hammering down on hand washing and social distancing when CDC suggestions were first handed down. Later they switched over to carry-out. Just last week they switched again to ordering and paying online to keep interactions at a minimum. Castro said their efforts were successful.

After all that adapting, they still didn’t feel what they were doing was enough.

Castro said, “The only true way we’re going to participate in the solution is by leading by example.”

El Meson now considering filing for a small business administration loan. 

“We’re in line as everyone else is,” Castro said.

His employees now adding to the number of jobless claims. 

“They know they have their jobs here. They know we will re-open. They know we’re very committed as family,” Castro said. He added it was with their blessing that their decision was made.

The latest numbers show more than 270,000 unemployment applications last week alone. So far, $45 million in benefits are paid out. Just over 100,000 people received those payments.

Montgomery county saying they had 800 people contact them about unemployment information. That number includes phone calls, appointments and visits to Montgomery County Jobs and Family Services.

Anyone planning on applying for benefits is encouraged to use a mass layoff number ID 2000180. It can help speed up your claim.

“It would apply to an individual who was either ill and needed to stay home or the employer, in response to the stay-at-home order, needed to temporarily suspend operation. So, it is a mechanism for streamlining. Not everyone has an understanding on how to use that number so it does not prevent the department from being able to process the claim,” said Kimberly Hall, Ohio Department of Job and Family Services Director.

El Meson is doing their best to stay connected. They plan on hosting live cooking watch parties on their Facebook page throughout their closure. 

“We need to all hold true to doing our individual part because its going to stop when we stop spreading it,” Castro said.

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