Doc Ford employees in St. In Pete, helping SWFL associates affected by Hurricane Ian | Rare Techy
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Doc Ford’s St. Petersburg Pier location is one of four in Florida and was the only one to be saved by Hurricane Ian. Its employees are now helping those who were not so lucky.
The restaurant has 500 employees across all locations, and Ian laid off more than half of them. The owners offered the employees the opportunity to transfer to St. Pete’s Pier location or work at the new St. Pete’s Jungle Terrace location.
Doc Ford co-owner Mark Marinello said more than 20 employees have taken them up on the offer. St. Employees at the Pete’s Pier location collected a carload of donations for the families of affected employees and are raising money to purchase items on the families’ Amazon wish lists.
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St. Pete’s Pier staff made several trips to Southwest Florida with a carload of donations.
“We had a lot of workers who lost their homes and were temporarily displaced and out of work, so that’s been the worst part of the whole thing,” Marinello said. “Buildings that are being rebuilt and reconstructed, but we are most concerned about the people.”
Marinello said the Captiva Island location is closed indefinitely as the resort where it is located is undergoing redevelopment. He said they hope to reopen the Sanibel and Fort Myers Beach locations by the end of the year.
“It’s shocking. It’s emotional. These are people you care about,” Marinello said. “One thing that we don’t just do with our people that we care about is the community that we’re in, we’re very involved in every community that we’re in, so it’s heartbreaking.”
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If you want to donate, they have drink specials and are raising money for St. At Pete’s Pier location.