How the food chain is changing to cater to the ‘coup d’etat’
A restaurant chain that once relied on the generosity of diners for its survival has now turned to social media to seek donations in the wake of the US government’s decision to ban all travel to the Middle East and Africa.
The fast food chain, Daniel Fast Foods, has begun sending food parcels to its 1,200 employees and its 200 locations in the US, Canada and the UK.
The company’s founder, Daniel Friedman, said that while his company had been operating under the radar, it had recently been receiving a lot of attention in the media.
“People are asking us how it happened, how we survived,” he said.
“We are not the easiest company to work for, but we’re a very resilient company and I’m glad to be here to help.”
The ban was put in place after Trump, the US President, threatened to scrap the Iran nuclear deal and impose new sanctions on Iran if it did not agree to curb its nuclear programme.
He had promised to cut the US supply chain and he has done just that.
He has already removed the food parcel programme from his Twitter account and removed his business from the company’s website.
“When the President of the United States said, ‘Cut our supply chain, cut our supply chains, cut all our supply lines,’ it’s going to be a tough day for all of us,” he told Al Jazeera.
The ban has come after Friedman and his team received hundreds of letters and emails urging them to keep the food distribution program in place.
The letter writers expressed their concerns about the economic impact of the ban, saying that the company could lose its jobs, lose business and even lose its bank accounts.
Friedman said the letters were being addressed to his wife, Shari, who lives in San Diego.
He said they were not personally affected by the ban and he did not want them to lose their jobs.
He added that while the letter writers were not his employees, they were trying to send a message.
“They are very sincere and sincere and that is a message that needs to be sent,” he explained.
The letters came in the form of an online form, in which the business owners would sign off on the parcels.
The form also includes an attached photo of a worker.
The recipients were asked to make donations of $25 to a special account, which was set up to help the workers cover the cost of their flights to the US.
The money would be sent to the employees’ bank accounts, the company said.
It is a sign of the times, Friedman said.
The Trump administration announced on Sunday that it had revoked the Iran deal, saying it was not in the interest of the world’s two main trading partners to maintain a nuclear-armed Iran.
Trump also said the US would not be accepting refugees from the Middle Eastern country.
“Our borders will be open,” he added.
“You are welcome to come to America, to your country.”
But the US has since withdrawn the refugee programme and the US Treasury has begun to review the visa waiver program.
The travel ban is also being challenged in court, with a federal judge in Texas ordering the Department of Homeland Security to take steps to review its actions, and in an order by a US district court judge in Seattle.
“The president has issued a series of executive orders which have, to some extent, created the situation in which he has essentially imposed a travel ban,” Friedman said, pointing to Trump’s January 28 executive order restricting travel to US territories and airports.
“He has issued an executive order which prohibits people from travelling to the United Arab Emirates and Syria, and has issued another executive order prohibiting people from entering the United Kingdom and Ireland.”
The travel restriction has also been challenged in a federal court in New York.
On Monday, Friedman told Al-Jazeera the travel ban was a major factor behind the decision to close the company.
“It’s a major reason why we are closing the restaurant, because the people are very concerned,” he pointed out.
“For example, we have employees who have been there for five years.
They have never been through the airport.
The people in our restaurant have never had any problems.
So, it’s very, very important to them to get the message out.”
We’re in a very difficult situation.
We have a very small business and the majority of the people here are people who have never worked for us,” Friedman added.