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Coping with Coronavirus: Keep Las Cruces business, services strong

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From Las Cruces Hispanic Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Curtis Rosemond:

"We realize many of our local businesses are facing the reality of having to lose or cut back staffing. Some businesses are even temporarily closing during these times of uncertainty. We are encouraging our community to shop locally and support our local business instead of online shopping. Many local businesses are looking at implementing and providing drive up and home delivery services.

“We are also working with our members to ensure the community is informed of their business operational changes due to the current restrictions. Many hotels and restaurants are offering promotional deals to help keep their business afloat. Our local businesses are trying to do their part in providing us their services, and we could do our part by supporting them.

“The LCHCC Board of Directors and I truly understand that these are hard times. We stand together committed in supporting our local businesses and our community.”

Visit www.lascruceshispanicchamber.com.

Local chambers of commerce: The Greater Las Cruces Chamber has multiple resources listed at www.lascruces.org/covid-19-resources. Also check the Green Chamber’s website at https://locallascruces.com/.

From Nicole Martinez, executive director, Mesilla Valley Community of Hope:

“We are holding strong. We have arranged our lobby as such that folks are sitting six feet apart, doing lots more cleaning. We’ve scaled back on home visits and are relying more on calls with our housed folks. Our hours of operation remain the same with full staff. We are in conversations about how to quarantine folks and how to respond to an increased need of rent to avoid evictions leading to homelessness in our community. We are hopeful that more sanitizer and cleaning supplies will be available soon!” Visit www.mvcommunityofhope.org.

From Lorenzo Alba Jr., executive director, Casa de Peregrinos Emergency Food Program

“Casa de Peregrinos is open. We have been making appropriate modifications to our operation in order to comply with (state and federal) recommendations and restrictions.

“We understand that these are trying times for all of us, however, we are staying open and we continue working for the families who are in need of food. Our mission of feeding the hungry continues.

“We have also seen that entire communities are shut down and schools and events have been cancelled, but hunger is not cancelled. We are committed to stay open for service as long as we can or are permitted to stay open. We are and continue to be the safety net for food-insecure families in our communities. We are working for you and will make changes accordingly without disrupting services.

“Thank you for your patience and cooperation. Our operations hours are 9-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m., Monday-Wednesday and Friday. Casa de Peregrinos is located at 999 W. Amador Ave., on the Mesilla Valley Community of Hope campus.”

For more information visit www.casadeperegrinos.org.

From Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and state government department leaders:

  • Buy local. This is a difficult time for all New Mexico businesses as foot traffic slows and sales drop. Help those businesses by finding creative new ways to support them. Order takeout from local restaurants. Purchase gift cards from local businesses. Order from local stores online if you can.
  • Buy only what you need at the store; don’t hoard. As the country hunkers down against the novel coronavirus, some people are getting panicky and buying more of essential products and shelf-stable foods. Hoarding huge supplies of high-demand items like toilet paper and hand sanitizer could leave others without. Plan to shop once a week and buy only what you need for that period.
  • Donate supplies. Homeless shelters still need supplies, especially toilet paper and cleaning products. Consider donating those items to a shelter near you or call to see what other items may be needed. Here is a list of New Mexico shelters, including those in Las Cruces: www.shelterlistings.org/state/new_mexico.html.
  • Donate food. New Mexico food banks report they are having trouble keeping their shelves stocked due to increased demand for assistance and competing orders to distributors from other large buyers. Consider taking a box of non-perishable food to a food bank near you. Here is a list of New Mexico food banks, including many in Doña Ana County: https://food-banks.org/new_mexico-programs.html.