Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, communities and businesses have been coming together in extraordinary ways to protect public health and safety while continuing to provide the things we need.
Policymakers, activists, and businesses all have a role to play to see us through this pandemic. Businesses are especially in a position to adapt and innovate to get help to the people who need it, while still protecting public health.
We must recognize the infeasibility of businesses operating as they were before the coronavirus while acknowledging that shutting down businesses will prevent people from responding effectively.
Businesses must quickly define the conditions under which they can responsibly operate in order to continue to employ people and produce the products and services Americans rely upon, while protecting public health.
Business leaders, along with public health experts, policy makers, and employees need to develop standards that businesses can use to help determine whether they can operate in a manner that protects public health. These determinations should be general guidelines because of the different challenges each business faces given their industry and location.
What’s needed is fast action that unites people behind real solutions. The extremes that are emerging in this discussion are unhelpful. We should neither ban business activity indefinitely nor should we demand a date when businesses will function as they did prior to the coronavirus.