Local Startup Offers Laundry Services for Those Most At Risk During Pandemic

This startup is providing a service to those most at risk and creating jobs for people unemployed due to the health crisis.

Originally a company set out to offer laundry services to AirBnb’s, Washbnb shifted its business after its market disappeared due to COVID-19. It’s safe to say people aren’t renting AirBnb’s right now. Looking for a way to still stay in business, Washbnb realized that with the new circumstances surrounding the virus there was a need that wasn’t being met: people still need to do laundry.

“Having a washer and dryer is a luxury,” explained Daniel Cruz, co-founder of washbnb. 

Usually a simple task, laundry is anything but simple during the pandemic, especially for those at higher risk. For individuals who are elderly or immunocompromised, going to a laundromat is not safe or feasible anymore. “Stay at home” is not a suggestion for them, it is a lifeline. 

“Laundry is some of the most intimate products we own,” said Cruz, who explained that having clean clothes, sheets and towels is a basic necessity.

Using Washbnb’s website, customers can now request for laundry pick up. Their services will serve the Milwaukee Metropolitan Area, along with providing jobs for service industry workers, many of whom have become unemployed due to the pandemic. 

To ensure the safety of its customers and employees, Washbnb is taking measures to protect everyone involved. The service is designed to eliminate person to person contact through processes such as leaving bags on doorsteps for both pick up and drop off, payment occurring online, staff wearing gloves, disinfecting bags and vehicles, sanitizing of workspace, in addition to following CDC guidelines.

Additionally, through the generosity of donations washbnb will serve even those who are currently not able to pay for their services. As Cruz explained, “There’s a need for reduced cost laundry even outside of the pandemic.”

For those who would like to donate, they can do so here

“I’m so proud of the hardworking washbnb team, which has made major lemonade after its intended market dried up a week ago,” said director of gBETA Milwaukee, Molly Dill, in a press release on Tuesday. “Daniel and his team have shown great ingenuity, and turned instead to helping our most vulnerable populations in this difficult time.”

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Allie is an Editorial Intern at Milwaukee Magazine. She is a junior at UW-Milwaukee studying Creative Writing and Journalism. You can follow her on Instagram at @alliehabck