BROKEN ARROW, Okla. — The city of Broken Arrow is working to get businesses back open.
The city canceled its emergency proclamations Thursday and is following the Oklahoma Bounce Back Plan put together by Governor Kevin Stitt. That means personal care places like salons and spas can reopen Friday. Other businesses like restaurant dining rooms, movie theaters, and gyms can reopen May 1.
That’s good news for people like Ben Persinger, who works at a restaurant in the Rose District.
“I mean, I see a lot of people taking a lot of precautions, wearing masks and doing everything they can," Persinger said. "But, I mean as long as people are staying a distance away I feel like it should be alright.”
Brea Hebert took advantage of Thursday’s warm weather to walk her dog. She said people are already getting out more and businesses should have the opportunity to reopen, but need to do so safely.
“I still believe that as far as going into like hair salons, restaurants, movie theaters, I still think it needs to be done where there’s not so many at once," Hebert said.
However, Hebert said she’s still worried about the coronavirus.
“I don’t feel we’re completely safe until it’s officially announced nationwide, not just citywide,” Hebert said.
Joyce Miller agrees. She said she thinks the city and state are reopening too soon.
“Well, there’s still so many, you know, that are ill," Miller said. "And every day, you know, there’s more. And I just am not in favor. I think it’d be better to wait.”
Broken Arrow Mayor Craig Thurmond said it's important for the economy and people’s mental health to get businesses open again. He said it’s up to the businesses to decide if they’ll open. And it’s up to people to decide if they want to leave their homes.
“If someone doesn’t feel safe, they should not leave their house," Thurmond said. "They should not. We’ve had businesses say they’re not going to open because they’re not going to be ready and they can’t get the PPE they need. There are some things that are required that they can’t do."
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