The TriState Minority Supplier Development Council Announces Steps …. in response to coronavirus disease (COVID-19)
The TriState Council recognizes that health for all concerned is of the upmost importance at this time. We now face a significant challenge with the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). There are 73 confirmed cases in TN, 26 cases (including one death) in KY; and 1 very recent case in WV. As days progress, we know that the situation can change.
Since its onset, the Council has been closely monitoring, and taking precautionary measures. Our primary goal is the health and well-being of our immediate staff, as well as that of our constituent’s … corporate members, MBEs, and community partners, alike. We will remain committed to our environment for supplier diversity, business development, and impact, to be responsible participants in the collective public health challenge for resolution. Moving forward, we will announce future step(s) in response to the current extraordinary circumstances with COVID-19. We are committed to maintaining the council’s daily operations.
This situation is frustrating, confusing and painful. But we know that small businesses, especially, are the most vulnerable, and yet very resilient. While these are very challenging times, we all must make the necessary adjustments in response to this threat by modeling the appropriate behavior – a combination of respect, compassion and responsible actions.
The Council has already taken first steps in adjusting to the situation by:
- Postponing the annual Impact Awards Gala and Scholarship Program, set for May 7, 2020, the Renaissance Nashville Hotel. We will announce a new date in the near future.
- Rescheduling the interviews of 19 graduating high school seniors for the vetting of over $100K in scholarships. We will announce a new date soon.
- Suspending all MBE site visits, and looking to use tools such as Skype, until such time of change.
- Advocating caution if one must travel.
- Restricting all face meetings at headquarters in Nashville, and the regional office in Kentucky, until such time that it is appropriate.
- Avoiding attending group meetings of more than 10 people, at any given time.
- Conducting services via a virtual model, in progress.
- Operate from a number of remote work locations, if feasible.
- Putting together an all-inclusive plan to address – Telecommuting, and Business Continuity.
- Using our collective voice to advocate on behalf of minority business enterprises, member corporations, and partnering organizations.
Let’s be clear: We do not take these temporary measures lightly. We do not know where this outbreak and the disease it causes is going, and what impact it will have on individuals’ health and the global economy, now and into the future. We recognize the disruption that this pandemic is causing. All we can do is hope and pray that it will end soon, with as little human and financial costs as possible. Through it all, we wish you well, and encourage your patience and support as we anticipate, in due time, a return to restoration and normalcy.
We look forward to continuing to serve you.
Take care, be safe and healthy!
Cheri K. Henderson
President & CEO