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How Tucson state of emergency is affecting businesses

How Tucson state of emergency is affecting businesses
Posted at 10:21 PM, Mar 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-18 01:21:33-04

TUCSON, Ariz. -- Many events have already been canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Some businesses have closed including Casino Del Sol.

All casino properties will be closed until April 3rd.

Now Tucson Mayor Regina Romero has shut down public gathering spaces in the city like bars, restaurants and even gyms.

Anita Freedlander, owner of Rusty’s Family Restaurant & Sports Grille, says her restaurant is absorbing a big economic hit because of the coronavirus.

“It’s very bad. It’s bleak. It’s impacted me about $40,000 just for the month of march. Just March Madness. I am quite worried,” she said.

She’s worried about her employees and her customers, but says she has a plan for her restaurant.

“Starting tomorrow, 11am to 8pm Rusty’s will be doing curb-side takeout. We’ll get your food, we’ll take it out to your car and pass it through your window,” she told KGUN9.

Measure that are being taken to prevent contamination.

As far as her employees, she says she has their back.

“I’m taking care of the ones who've been with me for 15-16 years first. People with families first,” she added.

While this shutdown is negatively affecting her business, she’s confident the community will help them out.

“I’ve been doing this 40 years. I’m a survivor and I will come through. I know my loyal customers will hang in there with me,” said Freedlander.

Curtis Sutton says he’s a regular at Rusty’s and it saddens him to know the owner and staff are going through this hard time.

“Somebody like Anita and the people who work here, Shannon, they’re all fabulous. It’s going to affect them more than me and I’m going to do everything I can to help them out,” he told KGUN9.

A community coming together in a time of need to help one another through a crisis.

“Let’s just not all freak, remain calm, and that’s all...it’ll be okay,” said Freedlander.

Freedlander tells KGUN9 she urges the community to support local business.

She says, if you have extra cash, to buy gift cards from restaurants and bars--then use them when the crisis is over.