Despite Relaxed COVID-19 Restrictions, Many Plan To Stay At Home

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Gigi Douban

Restaurants such as Little Donkey in Homewood will continue to provide curbside service only under Gov. Ivey's latest statewide coronavirus restrictions.

Rebecca Davis of Birmingham, owner of the Hawaiian shave ice food truck Ono Ice, would have opened by now, but COVID-19 prevented her from doing that. Gov. Kay Ivey’s revised coronavirus restrictions allow restaurants and bars to continue providing curbside service only. And Davis is relieved.

“I just don’t think we’re in a place right now where that would be safe. And I just don’t see how those businesses could operate safely at this point,” she said.

That includes her own business. Some food trucks are operating, but Davis said she’s going to wait at least another few weeks before venturing out.

“I will start reassessing that now and probably start going out in mid-May and see how it is,” she said. “I just wanted to give it a little more time and to think about how to operate safely.”

Same goes for Enisa Banks Perez, a stay-at-home mother of three in Birmingham’s Eastlake neighborhood. To her, Ivey’s order represents a safer middle ground.

“With all the pressure of the states around us, this is actually a really good balance,” Perez said.

Some nearby states this week began to lift stay-at-home orders, including Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina.

Amy Robertson Boyd of Homewood said she’ll be watching coronavirus case numbers in those states closely. She said she’s pleased that Ivey’s new order gives about two weeks before a complete reopening.

“Personally I’m not sure that is long enough,” she said.

Retailers can open at 50% capacity under Alabama’s eased restrictions. But Boyd said she and her family will stick to shopping for necessities such as groceries only.

Perez said not much will change for her family in the coming weeks.

“We’re kind of just going to stay at home like we’ve been doing, and when we want to go outside and we get a little restless we go in the back yard and play games or have a picnic or repaint,” she said.

She has a backyard luau planned in the near future.

The governor’s order expires May 15th.

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