WINDSOR, ONT. -- Essex town council is calling on health and government officials to get small businesses back open.

Members of provincial and federal parliament, along with Windsor-Essex medical officer of health Dr. Wajid Ahmed took part in a virtual meeting Monday night listening to the concerns passed along by members of the small business community.

Every councillor pressed for the ability to open small businesses, asking politicians for solutions.

"They're hurting and they're hurting bad. We need to find a way to get them open," says councillor Joe Garon.

Garon says council is in favour of opening all businesses back up keeping safety concerns and protocols in mind.

Councillor Chris Vander Doelen says the public has lost a lot of trust in the federal government due to strategic failures.

He suggests a formula that would allow small businesses to open to a number of customers based on their square footage indoors.

“We cannot throw away an entire strata of our economy over guesstimates which are proving to be wrong,” says Vander Doelen. “I mean, we’re a year into this now. We remember, only two weeks, this was going to flatten the curve. A year later, we’re not buying this stuff. I think you need to start allowing us to open up in some ways. Because what you’ve been trying isn’t working and we need to get back to our lives.”