The Coronavirus situation has brought about an uncertain future, but many local businesses in Kaufman are following Texas Governor Greg Abbott's plans to reopen in phases, which allows select businesses to operate at 25% capacity during its first stage, effective May 1. As shops begin to open their doors, Kaufmanites are voicing differing opinions on whether or not it is too early to take steps towards resuming life as normal.
Suzanne Faries, co-owner of Kirby's Boutique, says she's excited to be open again, especially after only recently opening their business.
"Everything is going great today!" Faries said. "We're just so excited to be able to reopen. We were only open about two weeks until they shut us down, it was devastating. We've had a lot of people today, and we've been very fortunate. We are so glad to open our doors."
Lindsay Moore, an employee of DJ's Graphics, is also happy to be back to work. "It's going good, we're happy to be back!" Moore said. "We have been fairly busy today, so, we love our local support."
Though many businesses owners and employees are undoubtedly ready to resume work, not everyone shares the same excitement. We asked readers on the Kaufman Herald Facebook page what they think of the decision to begin reopening in Kaufman. There were 92 comments from 2,055 people reached by May 2.
Some readers, like Neatherly Waltz, think the decision is being made too soon, saying: "Texas’ death rates are starting to surge and we’re opening up? Doesn’t seem it’s in our best interest to open at this time. I would rather give it some more time than to have to start all this back over."
Another reader, Laura Garner, said "The decision makers are in a horrible situation. There will be painful outcomes with whichever path is chosen. I would like to say financially we all can come back from this we will all survive and be wiser for what we have went through. But losing a loved one, a friend a huge chunk of the population is not something we’ll come back from."
Others voiced their excitement to return to life as usual, such as reader Timmi Counts saying "Finally! Now for my gym."
Pamela Jo Koole summed the situation up. "So we have something new going on here," she said. "Even the smartest of people in this field don’t have all the answers. The only thing that will reveal the truth is time."