'I hope people shop small and support small business:' Mom and Pop operations worry about COVID-19 shutdowns during holiday season

Many smaller business owners face dire financial consequences as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.
AGOURA HILLS (KABC) -- A lot of those 'mom-and-pop' operations count on the holidays for the bulk of their budget; and they say closing for three weeks could put them out of business permanently.

One business in Agoura Hills is feeling the impact of COVID-19 shutdowns.

"This is my dream. This is my family's dream and we hope to make it work," said Alexis Crouse.

She owns "Abigail's Kids Closet" in Agoura Hills. Through various months-long restrictions, she finally opened - and has survived... up until now.

"The holidays have been terrifying," said Crouse. "I ordered some of the clothing not knowing will we shut down? Will we stay open? Will people come in?"

She knows it may be out of her hands, expecting the news that Los Angeles will again issue its second stay-at-home order, the first since mid-March.

Los Angeles area Chamber of Commerce CEO Maria Salinas believes LA County is adding layers of unnecessary guidelines.

"They're in a dire position, they've been devastated," said Salinas. "To close down for 3 weeks, we will see an increase in permanent closures. I think that's very real."

What she's asking for is a better balance - by weighing the understandable health risk - and the economic risk as well. And it's not just a business or business owner, it's their employees; those employees that are trying to feed their families, they're trying to pay their rent.

Whatever happens, Crouse isn't giving up. They are keeping up with online sales. And if need be, she says she'll dress an elf and make home deliveries during this challenging time.

"I love my store, I love this center, I hope people shop small and support small business," said Crouse.

For more information or to shop, visit www.abigailskidscloset.com
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