(AllHipHop News) Republican governor Brian Kemp announced the re-opening of specific businesses in Georgia today (April 24) despite the fact that he acknowledged the plan will cause more people to be exposed to coronavirus. Many medical experts, local politicians, and Georgia residents have denounced the move.
Even the leader of his party, President Donald Trump, flip-flopped by publicly criticizing Kemp’s removal of shelter-in-place restrictions for nail salons, barbershops, tattoo parlors, and gyms. Trump said during a press conference, “I told the governor of Georgia, Brian Kemp, that I disagree strongly with his decision to open certain facilities which are in violation of the Phase 1 guidelines… It’s just too soon.”
On Monday, movie theaters and dine-in restaurants in Georgia are set to start taking customers once again under certain conditions. Atlanta rapper Tauheed “2 Chainz” Epps is planning to resume sit-down service at his Escobar and Tapas establishments.
2 Chainz’s business partner and co-owner, Snoop Dillard, confirmed the reopenings with TMZ. Both locations reportedly experienced a 95% financial downturn during the COVID-19 pandemic and were forced to furlough around 80% of the employees.
The restaurants are said to be implementing safety measures – such as mandatory gloves for staff, masks for cooks, and single-use paper menus – to protect the public from spreading coronavirus. However, hookahs will be available.
Many other Georgia businesses are resisting Kemp’s call to reopen out of concern that the lack of social distancing could put people in danger of contracting COVID-19. For example, fellow Atlanta Hip Hop artist Michael “Killer Mike” Render is waiting to reopen his own barbershops in the city.
According to the Georgia Department of Public Health, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the state has surpassed 21 thousand. At least 881 COVID-19 related deaths have been recorded in Georgia so far.
The GA Department of Labor reported unemployment claims increased more than 1,200% in March. A record 1.1 million Georgians have filed for unemployment benefits dating back to March 14. Nationally, American workers filed 26.5 million unemployment claims over the last five weeks.
This evening, I signed an Executive Order for Reviving a Healthy Georgia with our plan for the safe reopening of specific sectors of Georgia’s economy with limited operations. Read the order here: https://t.co/UA9bDXistu #gapol
— Governor Brian P. Kemp (@GovKemp) April 23, 2020