Upon learning that Oklahoma's recent budget cuts will cut benefits to nearly 88,000 people, one restaurant owner opened up his doors to those in need on March 29.
Gary Hicks, owner of Tiffany's restaurant in Noble, Oklahoma, announced on Facebook he will help anybody struggling to feed their families and make ends meet until July 2016. In two days, more than 4,000 Facebook users had shared the post.
“I was gonna rant and rave today about something that I couldn’t control," Hicks begins his post. "Instead I read a post from a young lady and now I’m going to give you some facts first then what I’m doing about it.”
He then describes the state's Department of Human Services’ letter announcing the cuts, noting this will leave thousands forced to decide between paying a bill or whether or not to eat for three months.
“The people that are getting these payments are at poverty level already and we all know someone on [State Supplemental Payments],” Hicks wrote. “I will offer this to anyone that needs it over the next 3 months; when you choose to pay electric and run out of money because the state has had a BUDGET shortfall come into Tiffany’s and we will feed you until you are able to make ends meet. God Bless all of you and this Country. Gary.”
What’s more, Hicks is now encouraging other restaurant owners to do the same.
“Every business in Oklahoma needs to step up and take care of our people in need,” he said.
Many social media users praised the man for his act of generosity, while a few offered their services.
For Hicks, performing good deeds like these are simply the norm, KFOR reports.
Hicks owns the restaurant with his mother, Phyllis, who he says is his inspiration.
“What we didn’t have, she wants to make sure people have now,” he said.
“I hope that everyone else stands up, and I think they will. Why wouldn’t you? If you have the ability, why wouldn’t you?” Hicks added.