"I can speak for multiple restaurants when I say that they are dishing out a bunch of money,” said Angelique Cannestro of Norwalk.
The full-time student and bartender at Hudson Social in Stamford has seen firsthand how restaurants have already spent a lot of cash on COVID-19 precautions.
“With these hours cut a lot of people will not be able to see a return on their investment.”
Now she said the mandate to cut the number of diners and their hours is just another struggle.
Beginning Friday, Governor Ned Lamont has ordered the last service for in-person dining at 9:30 p.m.
In response, Cannestro has created a Change.org petition to lift the curfew.
She’s already gathered more than 12,000 signatures.
“It’s just really sad to see. We have done every adjustment that they’ve asked and it’s just still not good enough.”
Restaurants can serve takeout later, but those in the industry wh spoke with NBC Connecticut said it’s just not the same.
“I’m not a fast food restaurant. I’m not a microwave restaurant. I’m trying to give people their money worth,” said Julio Cancho, chef and owner of the Canggio Restaurant and 86’d Bar and Eatery.
He continues to cook up creative ways to keep his business running, but this time constraint impact’s the experience he wants his customers to have.
“I’m rushing people out the door because I guess corona doesn’t spread after 9:30 p.m.? It’s just weird. And I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels that way.”
He hopes for even just a moment his food will let you forget about the coronavirus crisis, as state leaders have said they’re looking for a balance to keep communities safe and businesses open.
“It was a preliminary study but it did suggest a much higher odds of having been in a restaurant for people that had COVID for people who didn’t have COVID,” said Acting Commissioner of Public Health Deirdre Gifford during a news conference with the governor Thursday.
“Look we opened up to 75% a little over a month ago, we were trying to do everything we could to allow restaurants to get back on their feet along with other pieces of the Phase 3. We’ve had to roll that back just as you’ve seen a bit of an increase in the spread,” said Lamont at another event Thursday.
“For 15 years I’ve been working hard to make my American dreams come true,” said Cancho.
Both he and Cannestro believe there’s a better to keep restaurants in business and the communities safe.
“Our owner actually passed of COVID, so we not only had to shut down but then pick ourselves up with reopening,” said Cannestro. “We’ve all felt firsthand experience with the loss, so we’re not taking the regulations lightly.”