NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Many local businesses are struggling to recover from the financial impact of COVID-19, in addition to the property destruction caused by looters and vandals over the weekend.
But now, some owners said they are facing yet another obstacle: a curfew.
This week the city of Dallas imposed a 7 p.m. curfew in response to the recent protests.
The city even urged businesses in the central downtown area to close as early as 5 p.m. so “all patrons and employees can avoid harm.”
But some businesses are already struggling to stay afloat.
Cliff Edgar is the owner of Brick & Bones in Deep Ellum, a fried chicken joint that also sells craft cocktails.
He said the curfew could be the final hardship that puts his place out of business.
“The curfew put us in the position where we’re unable to operate,” Edgar said.
When the pandemic hit, Edgar said business operations switched solely to takeout orders.
Even though most businesses are now able to operate at 50 percent capacity under Gov. Abbott’s reopening guidelines, Edgar said Brick & Bones has yet to reopen its dining room to the public.
“Now, today, where we’re looking, we’re down 100 percent in revenue,” Edgar said.
To Edgar, the curfew represents the latest hurdle for businesses, especially in Deep Ellum, where vandals and looters hit several storefronts last weekend.
The bar WillCall, which is located on Main Street, also said it hasn’t opened because of the curfew.
A manager at a nearby taco shop, who asked not to be on camera, said the curfew inevitably cuts hours for employees, who are already experiencing a reduction in work hours due to COVID-19.
Under state guidelines, bars and similar establishments are now allowed to operate at 50 percent occupancy.
Edgar said he supports the movement behind the protests, as well as the safety of his patrons. But he said he cannot afford to reopen if he cannot earn revenue.
“We would love the city of Dallas to lift the curfew so we can operate and serve people like we love doing,” Edgar said.
When asked, a city spokeswoman did not say how long the curfew could last.
Dallas County has also imposed a curfew for county properties starting at 8:30 p.m.