PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - A beloved Portland staple, Mother’s Bistro, decided to shut down temporarily for the third time since 2020 due to the Omicron variant.

Owner Lisa Schroder tells FOX 12 she decided to shut down her restaurant last Thursday for precaution due the spread of Omicron affecting staff.

Schroder said, “it was the right thing to do to protect everybody. We’re learning how to shut down quickly, and now we’re also learning how to not waste food,” Schroder said.

“I made a last-minute call to just shut her down, and rather than let that food expire, we were going to donate it and thankfully we had a prior relationship with the Blanchet House," Schroder added.

Restaurants surrounding our region are taking similar safety precautions like Mother’s Bistro, others are still struggling to recover without support from the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF).

FOX 12 spoke with Director of Government Affairs for the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association, Greg Astley, who says the RRF, which was created by congress in spring of 2021, has since run out and our restaurants need more support.

“About half of the restaurants in Oregon that applied and were accepted into the portal for those funds didn't receive them. So, we need congress to go ahead and put money back into that fund so that those folks can get that money that they need to keep their doors open,” says Astley.

Adding that ORLA would like to see additional support from the state and federal level for employees that have to isolate due to the variant.

“Those who have to quarantine don't really have the option of not coming into work. So, we'd like to see a hospitality relief fund. We have a $1.4 billion surplus this budget cycle, so we believe there's money there to help the hospitality industry that's been so hard hit by this pandemic.”

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