West Oak Lane restaurant hires residents in need of employment

In some areas, the people in your neighborhood can be like a second family—tight-knit and always looking out for each other. It's especially true in Philadelphia's West Oak Lane neighborhood.

On the corner of Limekiln Pike and Michener Avenue, there’s a whole lot more than just authentic Jamaican food being served at Talk of the Town.

“We’ve been here for 30 years. This is my mother’s business that she started 30 something years ago," Keisha Armstrong told FOX 29.

Armstrong and her now-retired mother have made it a point to hire people who are apart of this neighborhood.

In January of 2019, black Pennsylvanians enjoyed their lowest unemployment rate (6.5 percent) since 2007, sitting most recently at 7.8 percent, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.

“Sometimes people won't hire them because they don’t have experience. A lot of places where you go, you gotta have experience, so I’ll bring them in and I’ll try to train them and show them what to do," Armstrong explained.

Barbara Thomas is one of those workers who lives here, works here and buys from here.

“Meeting the different customers, yes. Interacting with them, sometimes the relationship with them goes beyond serving them," she said.

Customer Marlon Hutchison knows all too well just how much flavor hiring local can add to your meal.

“It makes me feel like I’m back home. You come in here, it’s clean and the workers are friendly and respectable. I love it here," Hutchison said.


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