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Businesses aren’t typically seen as humanitarian organizations, but in a time of global pandemics like COVID-19, that’s precisely what they need to be. With the spread and unpredictability of the virus rampant in most areas, governments and businesses worldwide are taking care to ensure their employees and customers remain safe and healthy with regular checkups and preventative measures. Businesses that work to serve the public, like medical facilities or transportation companies (bus, train, airline), are essential in keeping citizens healthy during this time of crisis.

Some businesses feel it’s in their best interest to remain shut down until COVID-19 is under control; these typically include privately owned corporations that don’t deal with the public regularly, like hotels or restaurants. Some corporate offices remain closed for this reason, but having employees work from home is another option to keep them healthy and productive without endangering them or the general public.

Some privately owned corporations essential to society have made exceptions for their employees during the latest outbreak, like doctors and law enforcement. Businesses that provide necessary services should do their best to accommodate their employees during a crisis because it’s in everyone’s interest for the country to keep going, even when there is a looming health concern.

Without businesses open and running, citizens can’t get to work or buy groceries, making them sicker and increasing the risk of disease spread. The same is true for businesses that aren’t open because frustrated employees are more likely to get sick, which can have a domino effect on other industries via others becoming ill due to coworkers’ absences.

If one owns or works at a business that deals with the general public, they should practice proper hygiene (handwashing, covering cough) and keep vaccinations updated.

What this means for businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic:

It is in a business’s best interest to stay open if they are essential to society at large. Companies that deal with the general public need to be prepared to accommodate their employees. Businesses that deal with the general public need to practice proper hygiene and keep vaccinations up to date.

How business can thrive during COVID-19:

  • If a business is essential for society (ex: doctor, medical facility), they should accommodate employees.
  • Stay open if serving the public.
  • Keep vaccinations up to date.