Mayor London Breed on Thursday had lunch at One Market, in part symbolically to encourage San Franciscans to support the local economy and keep patronizing businesses, even as they practice varying degrees of social distancing — though everyone will need to decide for themselves what risks they are willing to take.
The mayor's downtown lunch comes just a day after she announced measures to support small businesses in San Francisco that may already or soon be suffering due to coronavirus fears and work-from-home mandates.
"It’s important that people follow the public health recommendations to disrupt the spread of COVID-19 in our communities,” said Mayor Breed. “We know these recommendations are disruptive to the lives of everyone in our City, but they will help slow the spread of this disease. Unfortunately, that means that many of our small businesses are feeling the economic impact of people staying home and not shopping or going out to eat."
Breed's measures include giving small businesses the opportunity to defer their local business taxes, and setting up a fund to provide immediate grants to some struggling businesses — the fund will have an initial investment of $1 million to provide up to 100 businesses with grants of $10,000 each in immediate relief. On Wednesday, several SF supervisors also proposed measures to help workers and small businesses, including a possible line of credit to extend no-interest loans to small businesses in danger of closing.
In a statement from One Market, the restaurant says, "Our hope is that others will follow in [Mayor Breed's] lead and eat responsibly at those restaurants that are adjusting their services to best prevent transmission while allowing guests to still enjoy their favorite dining experiences."
Officially, it's being recommended by public health officials that people maintain six feet between themselves and strangers in public spaces, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi today suggested that people give up fist-bumping and elbow-bumping and instead just bow to each other "eastern style."
South Bay Michelin-starred restaurant The Plumed Horse is taking this seriously by removing half of its tables so that diners can all eat six feet from other tables. And in the case of one Oakland restaurant, as Eater reports, they're suspending all on-site dining temporarily and pivoting to takeout only.
Also, Eater has published a set of common-sense guidelines for safely dining out, which begin with assessing one's own personal risk, and whether one is in a "high-risk area" for contracting the virus.