Cantina owners in Mérida complain: “the baseball game is sold out, but they won’t let us work’

Photo: (La Jornada Maya)

Mérida.- In spite of the fact that after the protest on August 30 it was said that the state government would have authorized the reopening of bars and cantinas as of today, September 14, the reality is different.

“We will not open tomorrow”, informed Jorge Castillo, owner of the cantina ‘Ramoncitos’ in the Delio Moreno neighborhood.

“The time was extended, there was a counter-order from the government and we will not open”.

The owner of the cantina ‘El Cardenal’, Said Farah Ceh, specified that there was never any official and direct information that on the 14th they were going to open.

“It was a suggestion made to the Secretary of Government, but there was never a clear or official decision,” he affirmed.

Farah Ceh lamented the treatment they receive from the state government, since “almost all the businesses are open, even the schools” and the Kukulcán park is allowed to be “sold out”, but “they won’t let us work”.

“The government considers us nonessential, even though we are places sought by tourists, where tourism is promoted and that contribute to the economic local development, we need the authorities to authorize the reopening because thousands of families depend on this business”, Jorge Castillo said

“Yucatecan businessmen are mistreated. Owners of other businesses are treated as first-class businessmen and the bartenders and bars as second-class businessmen. The customers of the bars and cantinas are treated as third-class citizens, which is a clear class division between rich and poor, which is not new in Yucatan, but it should not happen because the pandemic affects everyone evenly”, said the owner of the cantina ‘El Cardenal’, Said Farah Ceh.

“Until today there is no date for the opening of cantinas and bars. At some point, it was discussed that when the vaccination of people between 18 and 29 years of age is finished, six days later, we could open, but no official order was given and apparently, this proposal has been dropped”.

“I am crouching down, complying with the government’s provisions, resisting and surviving, but the suspension of activities is already expiring because we have been totally closed for three months, while all the other businesses are already working”, he emphasized.

The bars and cantinas were closed together with all non-essential businesses since March 17, 2020. In October and November, they authorized a reopening by paying a provisional permit of $5,000 per month to operate as restaurants, but then they revoked those permits and since three months ago all the ‘cantinas’ of this type have been closed.

The Yucatan Times
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