Employees brace for the strain of bar, restaurant closures

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SAN DIEGO — Bar and restaurant workers reacted Sunday to temporary operational guidelines announced this weekend by state leaders in response to the coronavirus.

Earlier Sunday, Governor Gavin Newsom called for bars, night clubs, wineries and breweries to close in an effort to limit the spread of the virus. He also called for restaurants to cut their occupancy in half.

“It was shocking; we were like, ‘Oh my God, what is going to happen,” said Phillip Nestor, bar manager of The Field Irish Pub in the Gaslamp Quarter.  

Nestor said many of his employees rely on tips to pay their bills. The new move announced by the governor, though temporary, will still put an enormous strain on the employees who will be impacted.

“It will be hard for them, especially when it comes to rent. But this has to deal with health, and we will have to follow it,” Nestor said.

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