Businesses in Naples forced to re-close after employees test positive for coronavirus

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson Writer: Drew Hill
Published: Updated:

An employee at the Naples location of Tommy Bahama has tested positive for COVID-19 this week.

To keep other employees, their families and the community safe, they have announced that the location at 1220 3rd Street South will be closing.

“We’d rather be on the overly cautious side versus the alternative and I think that’s really the only strategy that we can put in place right now,” said Executive Vice President of Tommy Bahama, Rob Goldberg.

The employee, while they tested positive, was asymptomatic.

Tommy Bahama will continue to monitor the situation and will determine when it’s safe to reopen their Naples location. “We’re now screening every employee that comes in the building, all employees are wearing masks, we take their temperature,” said Goldberg.

Another business in Naples, New York Pizza and Pasta, had to close due to a positive COVID-19 result and it’s been rough. “It’s scary for everybody,” said owner John Maffei.

But Maffei would rather be honest about the result than keep to it from his customers.

“Some people are hiding it. I’m not hiding it… I’m telling everybody what’s going on,” he said.

Health, much like Goldberg, is his number one concern. “Right now everybody’s health is more important than the business, so I want to make sure everything is done properly.”

But customers and people in the community just want to know when they can enjoy delicious food and drinks once again. “It’s just a huge question mark everywhere,” said Cynthia Landis of Naples.

Landis also hopes things don’t stay closed forever.

“Sometimes I think its a little overblown and you know whoever was sick, yes should definitely stay home, but you really can’t shut down the whole country forever or we’re doomed,” she said.

However, Andrea Becker, a visitor to the area, understands how hard it is.

“They lose a lot of money and it’s hard to keep employees and it’s really tough on them,” Becker said.

But she knows that it’s good for customers to know and for companies to be honest.

“I would hope that places I go would be upfront and close as soon as they know there’s an issue or at least inform their customers,” Becker said. “I think it’s the best thing they could have done. They have to protect everybody.”

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