Manitoba reopening amid COVID-19 pandemic ‘like waking up groggy from a bad dream’: retail council

Monday marks the beginning of Manitoba’s phased economic reopening, but it may not be the exciting event many retailers had expected when restrictions first came into place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Under normal circumstances, there’d be a tremendous amount of work and excitement that would go into reopening, but this is anything but normal,” said John Graham, Prairie director of the Retail Council of Canada.

“I think it’s really like waking up groggy after a bad dream.”

Although many retailers previously deemed non-essential are reopening Monday, strict physical-distancing guidelines remain in effect, and businesses must limit the number of customers to half of the maximum capacity. Hefty fines are in place for organizations that don’t follow the rules.

Graham said that for many retailers, there’s been a scramble to rehire employees who had been laid off due to the pandemic as well as to obtain necessary safety equipment and restock shelves.


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