After Rocky Mountain Coffee Co.’s three locations closed suddenly last week, 29 employees are trying to figure out what to do next.
Samantha Schreurs was the manager at the Courtenay hospital location and says management was forced to close the cafe on Friday because they could no longer pay for their bills or staff. But Schreurs doesn’t think it was because business had slowed down.
“The past month our cheques have been bouncing, our bills haven’t been getting paid for Gordon Food Services and Payworks, so we lost our payroll company. We couldn’t order from our GFS company because the owner isn’t paying the bills,” she said.
The cafe is owned by David Gan who lives in Singapore, according to Schreurs. She said he had visited the cafes at Easter, but after that, none of the managers were able to get in contact with him.
“Other management came down [on Friday] and basically said that we have to close the doors because we can’t order, we have no communication from David at all, he will not respond to anybody, so we had no choice,” said Schreurs.
The Record has reached out to Gan but he has not replied.
Having not gotten paid in nearly a month, Schreurs says she is planning to go to the labour board to plead the case. She will also have to get employment insurance to support herself and two girls while she figures out her next steps.
“How are you going to pay your bills and your rent if you’re not getting that paycheque. Kinda put me in a tough spot because now I can’t afford my childcare,” she said.
Schreurs adds she loved her job and always thought of the cafe as bringing light into the hospital. While many employees are now out of work, she says it is also a loss for the hospitals.
The Social Room in Comox is also owned by Gan and was also closed on Friday. A note on the door from the landlord stated that the tenant failed to pay rent and the landlord will relet the property.