As of 5 p.m. on Monday, dining (or drinking) inside of Philly bars and restaurants has been banned until at least March 27th. Philadelphia restaurants and bar owners had to act quickly when faced with the news that Pennsylvania had banned “non-essential” businesses from being open. This meant that these bars and restaurants were ordered to stop dine-in services. Businesses can still offer take-out, delivery, and drive-through services, however.
Just like schools, workplaces, and other places that would normally host large gatherings of people, restaurants have been hugely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic that continues to unfold across the U.S. every day. As foot traffic came to a screeching halt, there has been a sharp decline in sales throughout small businesses. With many local venues and eateries forced to close, many have not been able to pay their bills or have had to lay off staff as a result.
With more than 5 million people working in food service or related jobs in the US, the foodservice industry is under particular strain from these closures, as many of its employees don’t have paid sick leave or other ways to compensate them for declining business.
The best way to support these restaurants without furthering your own, or other’s risk of spreading the disease, is to continue to order take-out and delivery services. Some delivery apps, like Instacart and Postmates, have also introduced no-contact delivery, which is basically a way that the food can be dropped off at a specified location, or outside the customer’s door; therefore, reducing contact between the deliverer and the person who ordered.
I understand that everyone is going through many different changes and hope that everyone does their part to support small businesses and restaurants in any way they can as we go through this uncertain time. We will be able to get through this as long as we support anyone we can, as much as we can.