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When Barneys reopened its Madison Avenue flagship on Tuesday, it was to mixed reviews. Some argued that the store should remain closed because employees probably had more serious issues to deal with at their own homes than trying to get uptown. Others added that the city's limited transportation services should be reserved for those assisting with hurricane relief. And then some argued that Barneys reopening was just fine, whether that be for morale reasons or just because they wanted to shop.
In today's WWD, Barneys CEO Mark Lee made a point to address the issue of what workers actually showed up on Tuesday. The article explains: "Lee said the decision to open the Madison Avenue store Tuesday was made after enough voluntary sales staff was determined to be available and able to arrive safely."
The store opened at 1pm that day and only remained open for six hours. Lee adds, "We made a plan for those hours and would have exceeded it had we had more help on hand." Presumably, not everyone felt like volunteering to come into work that day—especially those who were without power, experienced damage to their apartments, or simply had no feasible way of showing up.
Though we're still not entirely sure who was shopping that day at Barneys, we do know what they were eating: Lee also told WWD that Gene's Cafe was giving out free coffee, along with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
· Retail Sees Slow Revival in Sandy Aftermath [WWD]
· Ladies and Gentlemen, the Barneys Flagship Has Re-Opened [Racked NY]
· All Hurricane Sandy coverage [Racked NY]