‘We're Worried': Businesses at Bayside Marketplace Hit by Coronavirus, Protests

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Businesses are feeling the impact of COVID-19 and protests across South Florida. 

Employers have laid off employees and some are thinking about shutting down their businesses altogether. 

At Bayside Marketplace, some owners said the last few months have been tough financially. One employee said as she sees the number of COVID-19 cases rising, she is looking for a new job.

Erika Murillo works at Havana Nines. She said since the store reopened recently, it’s been slow. 

“We’re all worried that we will shut down one day to the next,” she said. 

The clothing store has cut prices, and staff, since the pandemic started. 

“There’s not enough money coming into the store,” said Murillo. “But we have told each other that if we do close down your Plan B will be to apply to local supermarkets and work there so that you have some sort of income.”

Over the weekend, the state reported more than 4,000 new COVID-19 cases. 

“The amount of cases is going up tremendously, it was doing well when we first opened, but now it’s just outrageous,” Murillo said. 

In addition from feeling the impact of COVID-19, some days police have told stores to close early because of planned protests. 

“Due to the protests we’ve been scared because they looted our store the same night,” Murillo said. “So every single day there’s a protest we’re scared that the same thing is going to happen and we will be left with nothing.”

Murillo told NBC 6 the store did get a small business loan to help keep it open. 

However, U.S. senator Marco Rubio said 22% of businesses in the state were forced to shut their doors, while 41% were Black-owned and 32% Hispanic-owned. 

While Havana Nines waits for traffic to pick up, Murillo thinks people should continue wearing their masks and social distancing. 

“If we all follow the same guidelines, then I believe we will go back to normal hopefully soon," Murillo said.

Contact Us