A fundraiser for Greenpoint grocery store employees raised over $6,000 as a thank you for their work during the cornoavirus crisis.
Members of the co-operative arts space Sunview Luncheonette launched the campaign in April to compensate the 19 Met Foods (131 Driggs Ave.) workers with bonus pay, raising $6,240.
Lead organizer Dylan Gauthier says that the owner of the grocery store is happy for his employees to be recognized and matched the donation. The campaign’s co-organizers are Birgit Rathsmann and Rick Karr.“It started as a community bonus/mutual aid effort, since many of us noticed that the same cashiers and stockists were working long hours, every day, and others seemed to be out sick,” Gauthier said. “So we took up a collection and managed to crowdfund over $6k from generous Greenpoint neighbors. We reached out to the Met’s owner, Abel Park, who was so moved by the generosity of the community he has decided to match funds and provide a bonus to the entire team.”
Grocery stores suddenly became even more of a necessity as the coronavirus pandemic caused non-essential businesses to close across NY state in March. The crowdfunding campaign pitch explains that the donation is a a gesture of thanks to the workers who risked their well-being while providing an essential service to the neighborhood.
“Many take long commutes to get to work, risking their health and the health of their families on public transit. Others still have been asked not to come to work,”the campaign states. “As with so many service-sector workers who have been thrust into frontline support positions in the midst of a global health crisis, when they took the job of cashier or stockist, none of the Met’s workers planned on paying an immediate price for the well-being of our city.”