Mid-South cities making sure non-essential businesses stay closed

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — At Beauty Master in Whitehaven, it’s almost business as usual and the city will tell you that’s a problem.

According to the Safer at Home mandate, Beauty Master is supposed to be closed. The business is non-essential just like gyms or movie theaters. Businesses like that have been ordered to close as officials hope to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

So WREG went to Beauty Master. Employees admitted that the business shouldn’t be open, but they’re keeping it open anyway. They say they need to make money.

“Some businesses stayed open,” employee Max Shihi said.

He claims other non-essential businesses are also breaking the rules, but he wasn’t specific.

“We’re still trying to keep it safe,” he said.

He said they’re giving customers masks and hand sanitizer, but he admitted he’s worried code enforcement will come in and shut them down.

City officials said the department is working on a plan to keep all non-essential businesses closed.

Compliance isn’t an issue in Holly Springs, Mississippi, where police officers routinely go door to door making sure non-essential businesses stay closed and restaurants stick to delivery and take out.

“We’re making meals right now (for) pickup. Everything’s curbside,” one restaurant owner told officers Friday.

“People are pretty much complying with the orders that we have put in place,” Detective Justin Holpe said.

In Memphis, if you want to report a business you’re asked to call 311.

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