OR deli owner defiant, fighting for survival

Thursday, January 14, 2021
 | 
Steve Jordahl (OneNewsNow.com)

'Along Came Trudy' cafeCOVID-related lockdowns are making life hard for everybody, but the restaurant industry seems to be the one taking it on the chin. To stave off having to close their doors for good, some restaurant owners are defying the restrictions.

Oregon's Democratic governor, Kate Brown, has locked down 30 of the 36 counties in her state, effectively closing thousands of restaurants. Trudy Logan, owner of Along Came Trudy – a café and deli in Springfield – says she tried for months to be a good foot soldier for the governor. But when it came down to staying closed and losing her restaurant for good or defying the governor's orders, she chose the latter.

"I have my rent to pay, my insurance, my lights, my food – all of the above," she tells One News Now. "It doesn't stop happening just because you close your restaurant."

Logan also has ten employees to think about. "You have thousands of dollars in inventory and you have all these kids who work for you who have car payments, some of them have house payments," the restaurant owner adds.

She shares that when she looked around her neighborhood and saw scores of big-box stores open and thriving, her decision was inevitable.

"I just am seeing what's going on in the country, and I feel like our rights are being taken away and taken away and taken away and we're just letting it happen," says Logan. "If I'm going to go down, I'm going to go down fighting for what I think is right."

Jason Brandt of the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association [JB1] says as of November – which is the latest statistics he has – a couple of hundred restaurants have had to close their doors for good, despite eating establishments being among the safest businesses in the age of COVID.

"For the employees who work inside of our establishments, they represent less than 1% of all workplace outbreaks in Oregon – less than 1%," he repeats to emphasize. "Yet we're saddled with some of the most extreme and significant economic restrictions compared to other industries."

Brandt's organization has set up a legal defense fund to help restaurant owners in the state with the cost of filing a lawsuit against Governor Brown or their county for losses incurred during the COVID pandemic. An earlier lawsuit against Brown for restricting in-person dining failed to bring results.


Photo credit: 'Along Came Trudy' Facebook page

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