COVID-19 affects business as usual

Jessica Hook, T.P. (Totally Precautious),

11” x 14”, Graphite, colored pencil, ink,

2020, Drawing I

On March 19, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf ordered the closure of all nonessential businesses across the state of PA due to COVID-19. It was implemented to control the spread of the virus, and the order forced the closure of all businesses that did not serve the public with necessities. This meant that nearly all food businesses would stay open, while places such as the Lehigh Valley Mall were closed to prevent the virus from spreading further, but the order affected people’s jobs.

Those that were “non-essential” had to either consider unemployment or wait until their jobs would return after the pandemic subsided. Those deemed “essential” kept their jobs and were given documentation protecting themselves from authorities in the case their counties went into a lockdown.

“It’s crazy,” a woman—who asked to keep her identity private—of a local fast food restaurant in Carbon County stated.

“They say we’re essential, but we’re still out here. We have a chance of getting it and bringing it home to our families.”

As these workers had to continue to go to work during the pandemic, those that are not working struggle in a different way. Jim Thorpe, known for bringing tourism to Carbon County, has less people on its streets as events have been cancelled while local stores are suffering, too.

With new cases each day, businesses are financially suffering. After the panic subsides, countries around the world will be able to see how businesses recover.