Stores slowly reopen during Phase 1, some choose to remain closed

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Retailers and some small businesses can reopen Friday at 5 p.m. in accordance with Phase 1 of Gov. Roy Cooper's reopening plan. Some places, like Gena Chandler's in North Hills, are ready to see some foot traffic while other places are holding off.

Some businesses are choosing to remain closed during the COVID-19 crisis.

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Stores slowly reopening during Phase 1, some choose to remain closed.

"I like being a leader in many respects, but I'm not interested in putting anybody's health at risk," said Deco Raleigh owner Pam Blondin.

Blondin said that could remain the case through May or possibly June.

"I just want to be super careful," she said. "Why tempt fate?"

The decision is related to her own struggles.

Blondin is immuno-compromised after battling breast cancer and finishing chemotherapy. She hasn't stepped foot into Deco Raleigh in eight weeks.

"That gave me enough experience to know that your health is more important than stuff," she said. "I love my customers and I love what we sell, but what we sell is not lifesaving stuff, right?"

Her staff had been taking appointments this week ahead of Mother's Day or helping customers pick out trinkets and other gifts via FaceTime.

Other small-business owners are planning to reopen Saturday only after putting several safety measures in place.

Dress Boutique owner Pam Mullaney is installing Plexiglass at her register.

"We can slide any receipts, jewelry, anything under the counter," she said.

Mullaney says staffers will have their temperatures checked before starting a shift and will be wearing masks. Customers are being asked to always wear the protective item.

She'll be limiting how many people can come in and is going to dedicate three days a week to 'appointment only' shopping for folks who feel uncomfortable shopping around others.

"I'm excited to open. It comes with a little bit of thoughtfulness and pause for sure," said Mullaney. "I think as much as people want to resume some level of normalcy, we have resume that in a very, very cautious way."

The takeaway here is not every store is going to be reopened just because they're allowed.

You want to call ahead, check their website or social media accounts to see if doors are in fact opening.
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