Small businesses lead rolling protest to 'let Lubbock work' - FOX34 Lubbock

Small businesses lead rolling protest to 'let Lubbock work'

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

As Texas continues to try balancing public safety and returning to normalcy, small businesses in our area protested Saturday morning to reopen Lubbock. 

Demonstrators calling on city leaders to let nonessential businesses stay open while maintaining safe and consistent guidelines during the coronavirus outbreak. 

The 'rolling' protest demanded restrictions be lifted from small businesses by Monday. 

Kim Runyan is one of the event organizers. She said the intention is not to downplay the virus, but to ensure small businesses have the same opportunity to serve our community as big-box stores. 

 "Just give us the set of rules and we'll innovate from there. I mean you see it all over town, people here are ready to work," she said. 

Celeste Ashley owns a concrete business in Muleshoe. She said while her business was deemed essential, she believes all owners should have the same rights. 

"That's the concern I have is that some small businesses have been shut down and they're perfectly capable of doing what I did. And I think they should all be given the same opportunity," she said. "I don't think the government should treat us like children, that we're not capable of following some simple rules and regulations to keep our people safe."

Runyan believes the economic disruption could have lasting effects on small business owners. 

"We don't want anybody sick or dying, but we also don't want businesses dying either," she said. 

Organizers asked for guidelines to safely reopen their businesses by Monday. The City of Lubbock's stay-at-home order is still in place until April 30. Meanwhile, Governor Abbott announced Friday the initial steps to begin reopening the economy. Part of the governor's announcement includes "retail to go" at all stores beginning April 24.

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