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This page offers all of Delaware Public Media's ongoing coverage of the COVID-19 outbreak and how it is affecting the First State. Check here regularly for the latest new and information.

Delaware State Chamber of Commerce calls reopening some businesses 'a step in right direction'

Delaware Public Media

Gov. John Carney’s decision to reopen part of the state’s economy is good news for many businesses. 

Department, clothing, and sporting goods stores as well as hairdressers are among those allowed to open their doors to offer limited services.

Delaware Chamber of Commerce President Michael Quaranta said it’s a small step in the right direction and hopes the state will stick with it even if COVID-19 case numbers fluctuate.

“I think we have to be careful that we don’t jump to conclusions and that we don’t automatically close things back down,” Quaranta said.  “But, we continue to practice all of the kind of safe and durable changes that will kind of make everybody safe for employees and their customers.”

Quaranta is confident these businesses can manage their employees and customers’ safety.  He said it’s in everyone’s best interest to play by the rules.

“I think in large part the visitors will do their part and I think the stores will absolutely do their part.  We can’t count on everybody to do this 100 percent right,” Quaranta said.  “Businesses are going to have to learn and figure all this out.  So, everyone is going to have to be a little bit patient.  But, I do think we can get there.”

Quaranta said this initial testing of the waters could lead to reopening more businesses.  He also hopes if case numbers go up, businesses won’t automatically be blamed for employees or customers getting sick.    

Gov. Carney announced his decision to reopen some businesses deemed “non-essential” Tuesday after hearing from business groups.   But he emphasized that the state is not entering Phase 1 of reopening yet and hopes this interim step will help adapt to new ways of operating before starting that initial phase of reopening.     

Businesses allowed to reopen can do so Friday at 8 a.m.  Small retailers are limited to use curbside pickup.  Jewelry stores and hair care services can only accept customers by appointment.


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