Despite taking hit during shutdown, hair salon helps furloughed workers

Posted at 3:03 PM, Jan 23, 2019

For hair stylist Lucretia Johnson, the government shutdown has taken a cut out of her business.

“I've been doing hair for over 30 years and this is the slowest I’ve been, and I didn't realize I had a lot of government workers,” Johnson says.

With no paychecks coming in, federal workers are cutting back on whatever they can.

“Sorry to say, that's the first thing to probably go is your nails and your hair,” Johnson says. “I'm thinking about not even getting my nails done right now. It's a want, not a need.”

But Johnson knew she needed to do something after hearing about the struggles so many workers are going through just to keep their homes, pay their bills and put food on the table. So, she started offering federal workers free or discounted haircuts.

“Because it's hurting a lot of people and I hate to go through this, but it just touched my heart, because so many people are hurting and I want to help,” the hair stylist says.

Phyllis Logan is one of those workers who are struggling.

“Watching the gas tank right, and tomorrow, my electric is supposed to go off,” Logan says. “I have mortgage that's due.”

The pain can be tough to put into words.

Logan works for the Drug Enforcement Agency and has been going to work for more than a month without getting paid. She's become so desperate, she started rationing her food.

“I asked him to cut it in four and I would eat one piece in the morning and be hungry throughout the night,” Logan says.

But for an hour today, Logan tried not to think about her problems, while getting a free haircut at Unique Image Hair Salon.

“Just to be in here today to get this done, I do, I feel pretty again. I do. It meant a lot to me,” Logan says.