COVID-19 Impacting Hattiesburg Businesses

March 24, 2020

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) – Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker signed an executive order over the weekend closing dining rooms in restaurants and shutting down gyms.

It also limits gathering to no more than 10 people.

With this order put in place, restaurants are shifting to carry out or delivery only. Some businesses are shutting down completely.

“With the COVID-19 pandemic, our economy is getting hammered across the world and in the nation, and certainly in the state as well,” said Chad Newell, president of the Hattiesburg Area Development Partnership.

Newell believes some businesses can continue to make money.

“Those companies that are able to pivot quickly and develop a new model to reach their customer base are going to be the ones who survive during this tough time,” Newell said.

Some places are doing well during this time.

“Believe it or not, even in these incredible difficult times that we are facing right now in the world, there are businesses hiring right now,” Newell said.

Lawmakers in Washington have been working on a bill to stimulate the economy.

“I think it’s extremely crucial for the federal government to finalize the current stimulus package and get it out because that’s going to help small businesses, large companies, it’s gonna help individuals,” Newell said.

Newell believes there will be everlasting changes from this crisis, but isn’t sure what they’ll be just yet.

“It’s about helping our businesses succeed in these uncertain times,” Newell said.