Commentary: Roundtable, chamber support Carney’s steps

By Robert W. Perkins and Michael Quaranta 

The Delaware Business Roundtable and the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce, which is the umbrella organization that includes the Delaware Manufacturing Association and the Delaware Retail Council, released the following statement this week in response to the additional steps taken today by Governor John Carney in response to the COVID-19 pandemic:

We recognize and support the necessary and urgent steps taken by Gov. Carney in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and agree they are essential to protect the health and safety of all Delawareans.

A carefully constructed order requiring citizens to shelter-in-place and closing non-essential, public-facing businesses is designed to slow the outbreak of this virus and prevent the most vulnerable among us from becoming infected.

Delawareans need to be confident that our state’s healthcare facilities are not overwhelmed and can respond to this emergency, and today the governor took an important step in that process.

We appreciate the fact that closing non-essential businesses at this time is an action that the governor carefully considered prior to implementing. While we know that closing these businesses, even for a short time, will pose challenges to business owners and their employees and will negatively impact Delaware’s economy, the risk to public health must take precedence at this time.

Many businesses already have implemented work-from-home practices and many more will now be required to do so. Those businesses that remain open must still follow CDC guidelines for social and physical distancing.

It’s important that as many businesses as possible find creative, innovative, but safe ways to service customers within the confines of the Governor’s Emergency Order and the CDC guidelines.

Given what we know about this virus and the experience in other countries and around the U.S., our organizations are confident that the steps taken today will help Delaware through this most challenging time. The Delaware Business Roundtable and Delaware State of Commerce will continue to work collaboratively with the state in support of the business community and all Delawareans.

For the latest on Delaware’s response, go to www.de.gov/coronavirus.


Robert W. Perkins is executive director of Delaware Business Roundtable.
Michael Quaranta  is president of Delaware State Chamber of Commerce.