As of Monday, March 16, 2020, City officials announced new restrictions on commercial activity, and a halt to all non-essential City government operations, in order to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus in Philadelphia.

“These changes are not made lightly, and we are well aware of the potentially devastating effect they will have on the businesses and workers of Philadelphia,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “Our Administration is actively developing grant and loan programs aimed at business and job preservation. For now, I urge all businesses and residents to observe these restrictions so that the threat of this virus can quickly be eliminated.”

Thank you to the vast majority of non-essential businesses that have closed in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus in Philadelphia. All businesses deemed non-essential should be closed. Visit this page for a complete list of essential businesses. Residents can call 311 to report non-essential businesses that are open.

Thank you to our essential businesses for the services you are providing in this difficult time. We strongly recommend the following precautions to protect yourself, your employees, your patrons, and the broader community:

  • Offer delivery options or curb service. 
  • Limit the number of patrons allowed inside at a time. 

This will require monitoring and enforcement, including to promote social distancing and safe hygiene practices among patrons who are waiting outside.

  • Post signs on the front door and throughout the business, reminding patrons to practice good health habits and maintain a six-foot distance apart. Please visit our resources page for signs you can download.
  • Enforce the six-foot rule. Imagine Allen Iverson lying horizontally between you and another person – that’s six feet. Keep an Allen-Iverson’s-distance between you. Or the length of a full-size bed. Consider putting down strips of tape in check-out lines to indicate where customers should stand.
  • Implement an exclusive shopping hour for seniors and those at risk to protect the Philadelphians who will suffer most if they contract the virus.
  • Provide hand sanitizer, cleaning wipes, tissues, and signs encouraging their use for patrons. Provide gloves for employees.
  • Clean surfaces that people touch often like doorknobs, counters, phones, faucets, shopping carts, and baskets. Be sure to follow the label instructions and read our home cleaning guidance for COVID-19 coronavirus.
  • Ensure that all employees frequently wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water is not available. Download a poster about hand washing.
  • Install sneeze guards or plastic barriers between staff and the public. Place produce and other non-packaged food behind barriers and have staff handling these with gloves on.
  • Communicate with your patrons via signage and regular social media posts regarding any changes in hours or other important updates.
  • Business owners or managers who have questions about the order and restrictions can email Residents or employees who believe a business is in violation of these restrictions are urged to contact 311. Restaurants may operate under the order solely to provide food through online, delivery, pickup, or walk-in ordering. Dine-in service is strictly prohibited.

We commend the businesses who are following these recommendations to protect the public’s health. Thank you to all of our business owners and staff for doing your part to keep Philadelphia healthy and our store shelves stocked. We need you now more than ever.

Important resources on COVID-19 coronavirus: 

  • For the latest information and updates on COVID-19 coronavirus in Philadelphia:
  • COVID-19 Text Alerts: Text COVIDPHL to 888-777 to receive updates to your phone. 
  • Greater Philadelphia Coronavirus Helpline: Call the 24/7 helpline at 1-800-722-7112 to speak with a health care professional.