We all know the toll that Covid-19 has taken on our economy.
The latest news coming out of NYC is that as of tomorrow, indoor dining in restaurants is once again banned.
Unfortunately, I have to agree with the ban. With Covid numbers rising across the country, it is the only way to try to gain some sort of control over the growing list of cases in the city.
I am fully aware that indoor dining is the only thing that is keeping a good number of restaurants open. However, given that the vaccine has yet to be administered and many refuse to follow the guidelines laid out by the CDC and the government, this is a necessary step to take until this second wave is over.
In times of crisis, making tough decisions are the norm. The last six months with Covid-19 has forced these decisions to be made both on the governmental level and the individual level.
In New York City, the hospitality and the restaurants industries have been devastated. Initially, there was only takeout and delivery allowed. Then the restaurants were allowed to open for outdoor dining only. But, the revenue coming in could not compare to what was previously made when customers were able to eat inside.
Anyone who lives in the Northeast of the United States knows that we do not have warm weather 365 days a year. Before we know it, winter will be here and outdoor dining will be impossible. But both the Mayor and the Governor refuse to allow restaurants to open for indoor dining, even with limitations.
I understand why the Mayor and the Governor are still refusing to allow restaurants to allow customers inside. New York and New York City especially has worked incredibly hard to reduce our overall Covid numbers. I am also completely aware of how dense the city is.
They claim that they are waiting for a vaccine. The problem is that it will likely not be available for the general public until the end of the year or early next year. This city cannot afford to wait that long.
There are two problems with this refusal. The first is that New Jersey and the rest of the state does allow some indoor dining. Diners who are eager to go out to eat (and sit inside) and unemployed hospitality employees will not stay within NYC’s borders. The second is that the restaurant industry is one of the economic backbones of the city. Without this institution, New York City will die a slow and painful financial death, with Covid-19 being the final nail in the coffin.