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Every Monday at 6:42 a.m. and 8:42 a.m., Rob Gilligan provides information on what's happening in the area of regional development in Southeast Missouri. Rob is the President and CEO of the Cape Chamber.

Let's Talk Business: "Open, Not Over"

The National Guard/Flickr, License:https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/legalcode

We are wrapping up week one of Phase Two of the Show Me Strong Recovery Plan announced by Governor Parson.

Phase Two means Missouri is fully open and moving forward. The Governor based his decision on his four essential recovery pillars: expand testing capacity, expand reserves of PPE, continue to monitor and, if necessary, expand hospital and health care system capacity, and improve ability to predict potential outbreaks using Missouri's public health data.

Certainly people are anxious to resume something close to a normal life. National retail sales numbers are up more than 16% and the hospitality industry is beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. While unemployment numbers remain high, new filings are down and people are going back to work.

However, it is important to remember the phrase - open, not over. The virus is still with us and numbers in several states are going back up as things reopen. We have been advised by the Cape County Health Department our new cases are being traced to family contacts and employee to employee contacts. And the 20 – 29 age group is seeing the greatest increase.

So, please remember we only come fully back if we all take personal responsibility. Employers, please protect your employees and patrons by following social distancing recommendations and wearing masks if social distancing is not possible. No one wants to take a step backward, have sick employees, or face quarantine. 

John Mehner is the former President and CEO of the Cape Chamber.
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