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‘Get back to work’: More than 1,000 people rally in downtown SLC to re-open Utah

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Posted at 9:34 PM, Apr 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-18 23:51:22-04

SALT LAKE CITY —The area surrounding the Salt Lake City & County Building was filled with people Saturday for a rally hosted by Utah Business Revival. The roads surrounding the building were also filled with cars decorated with American flags and people honking in support.

“I believe that it is not just lives versus money, I believe it is lives versus many more lives. I don’t think as a society we understand the economic ramifications. Health has so many more aspects,” organizer Eric Moutsos said.

Lehi resident Daphne Podolak said her and her family were at the rally to advocate for their freedoms.

“We want to find a safe way for businesses to open again and we just believe everyone has the right to choose if they want to stay home and what measures they find safe,” she said.

“Things have just gotten more and more ridiculous,” said Stacie Bunton, who lives in Orem.

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall released a statement regarding the rally:

“We encourage everyone to support local businesses in ways that don’t compromise public health. The purpose of the County Health Order currently in place is to prevent the spread of COVID 19, one of the leading causes of death in our country right now. These demonstrators have chosen to gather in one of the most infected zip codes in the state: downtown Salt Lake City’s 84101. We’re grateful for those who are taking the order seriously by not gathering in large groups. We should all be making these sacrifices for doctors, nurses, medical workers, first responders and front line workers who are most at risk right now.”

Friday, Governor Gary Herbert announced a plan to re-open parts of Utah's economy that have been significantly impacted by COVID-19. For more information on the plan, click here.

The economy should be re-opened immediately, said Jean Nelsen, who lives in Orem.

“We’ve got all the big box stores open but the little guys are suffering and I’m worried about them,” she said.

A counter-protestor showed up to share his views as well.

“We are in the middle of a global pandemic. It is dangerous to be outside sometimes without the proper protection,” he said.

For the latest news on COVID-19, click here.