PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The return of Philadelphia’s indoor mask mandate means changes for businesses, and many have had a tough time during the pandemic. Businesses Eyewitness News talked to have mixed reactions over the new rules.
Many restaurants in Rittenhouse Square welcome the changes. But other industries, like fitness centers, say they’re already losing business.READ MORE: Eagles Sign DE Josh Sweat To 3 Year Contract Extension
As gym-goers work up a sweat at Retro Fitness in Spring Garden, the owner is sweating over too many members leaving because face coverings will be required at the gym regardless of vaccination status starting Thursday. It’s due to the city’s new COVID rules.
“We’re already getting cancellations from memberships,” Retro Fitness co-owner Bob Polizzano said. “With a business like ours, there’s too many people coming in and out, and to monitor that would be too much of a challenge so the mask is the only real option that we have.”
At Brown’s ShopRites, 2,300 employees from its stores in and around Philly are already required to wear masks inside, vaccinated or not. And co-owner Sandy Brown prefers everyone mask up.
“I just believe it’s always good to wear the mask. So when I’m inside, I am wearing masks,” Brown said.
“Whatever is gonna keep everyone safe, we just have to do what we have to do,” Manayunk resident Sam Kolloi said.READ MORE: Man Shot At Least 8 Times In Strawberry Mansion Left In Critical Condition, Police Say
“I think the city stepped up and did the right thing,” said Avram Hornik, owner of Craft Hall, a brewery and restaurant in Northern Liberties.
“Now, we’re going to require people to wear masks for the indoor restaurant unless they’re seated at a table and eating and drinking,” he said.
Is that going to impact the bottom line at all?
“What’s most important now is public health and we have to think of not short term pain but kind of long term,” Hornik said.
But back over at Retro Fitness, Polizzano had a message for Mayor Jim Kenney.
“I think that each business needs to be done by a case-by-case basis,” he said.MORE NEWS: Delaware Gov. John Carney Requests Disaster Declaration From President Joe Biden Due Damaged Caused By Ida
The owner of Craft Hall also runs two clubs, including Concourse in Center City and Dolphin Tavern on South Broad Street, and says vaccines there will be required of everyone due to the close contact.