Any Nashville business owners who don’t obey the city’s new COVID-19 guidelines risk losing their permits to operate, Nashville Mayor John Cooper said at a press conference Monday.
Cooper, preaching safety first, said the community must respond to business owners who flagrantly violate the rules.
“Should a venue persistently not try to keep its customers or staff safe, should that happen after lots of education, then, of course, it is the right of the public health department to pull all of its permits allowing it to operate as a public business. People have a right to be safe and not just safe at home. They need to be safe when they go outside. People have worked very very very hard in this town to limit the spread of the virus, and we have to honor that work. We have to value it. We have to reinforce it,” Cooper said.
“We will encourage people not to patronize. Public notice can be involved with people understanding that they’re not going to be safe in a particular spot and that the ownership is not valuing customers, is not valuing the citizens in Nashville and all their efforts. We are in a situation together. We can, as neighbors, make it work and it’s inappropriate for one party to endanger the rest of us or more of us into the lazy, frankly, and not protecting its staff and its customers and from that laziness.”
Cooper went on to compare his guidelines to seat belt laws that keep people safe.
“Well, this is a lot bigger than seat belts, frankly,” Cooper said.
As The Tennessee Star reported last week, Nashville business owners better comply with all of Cooper’s safety rules, or else police might pay them a visit. As of Monday, Nashville moved to Phase One of Cooper’s plan to reopen the city’s economy, at least partially.
As The Star reported last month, Cooper issued a four-phased plan to reopen Nashville’s economy.
According to ASafeNashville.org, for each of the four phases Nashville is in, city officials will only advance to the next phase if the area meets one of two benchmarks. The website said either the number of COVID-19 cases in Davidson County must remain stable or the number must decline over a 14-day period.
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