Residents, businesses prepare for ‘stay at home’ order in Mecklenburg Co.

Residents, businesses prepare for ‘stay at home’ order in Mecklenburg Co.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Mecklenburg County is preparing for a stay at home order effective at 8 a.m. Thursday, running until at least April 16.

Under the proclamation, people who live in the area can still do things like go to the grocery store, go to restaurants for takeout, and go outside for exercise. People can pick up medicine, go to the doctor, and walk pets.

However, the county’s residents are asked to avoid visiting friends if there is no urgent need, avoid visiting loved ones in the hospital or nursing home, and not go to work, if the business is not on an “essential businesses” list.

For the ones that are on that list, many are staying open, but not without some setbacks.

“Each day has opened a whole new day of challenges,” Larry Hill of American Dry Cleaners says.

There are not as many people getting their dry-cleaning, this week.

“It really has been eerie, in a way,” Hill says. “Because business has tailed off.”

Still, he finds his laundry service listed as one of Mecklenburg County’s “essential businesses,” one of the types of companies allowed to stay open during the county’s order.

He’s grateful, still allowing customers in, and offering delivery services for some.

“If we just close the business, it’s not like all your bills stop,” Hill says.

Still, he says he has had to scale back, cutting down his staff and only having those left come in certain days, to do the cleaning.

Down the road, Indian Trail Hardware in Union County is grateful to see “hardware stores” listed as “essential” on their neighboring county’s list. The family-run business is hoping that would be the case, should their area see a similar order.

“It’s scary, it really is,” owner Karen Wingo says. “Because we don’t know day-to-day, will we be able to stay open?”

Her employees are being extra careful already, with drive-thru shopping only, and passengers remaining in their cars. Each employee wears gloves, and only speaks with customers through the passenger’s side doors of their vehicles.

“It’s hard, small businesses struggle,” Wingo says. “So, we will do whatever we can to stay open.”

Back in Mecklenburg, people are doing what they can to get by, for now, taking it day-by-day.

“I don’t think two weeks out,” Hill says. “Right now, I’m thinking about today and tomorrow.”

Copyright 2020 WBTV. All rights reserved.