San Francisco to Allow Hair Salons, Other Businesses to Reopen After Pelosi Visit

GoFundMe for salon owner reaches $336,000
September 11, 2020 Updated: September 11, 2020

City officials in San Francisco will now allow hair salons and certain other businesses to reopen in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, coming days after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) visited one, sparking a nationwide outcry.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed announced the second phase of the city’s reopening during the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus outbreak would allow the business to resume at hair salons, massage services, nail salons, and barbershops starting Sept. 14, which is Monday.

“These businesses have been struggling, and starting Monday, they’ll finally be able to serve customers again, with the necessary safety precautions and modifications in place,” Breed said in a press release. Her office said it is “earlier than the city previously announced.”

House Speaker
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) speaks about stalled congressional talks with the Trump administration on the latest pandemic relief during her weekly news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Aug. 13, 2020. (Sarah Silbiger/Reuters)

“I’m so glad we can move forward earlier than expected to reopen more businesses that have been closed since March. These businesses have been struggling, and starting Monday, they’ll finally be able to serve customers again, with the necessary safety precautions and modifications in place,” the mayor continued. “It’s on all of us to keep doing our part so that we can get more businesses reopened, get our kids back in school, and keep making progress on our economic recovery.”

Breed, a Democrat, urged locals to wear face coverings, keeping distance, and washing hands.

Pelosi visited ESalonSF several weeks ago, and video footage of the incident was sent to news outlets. The longtime congresswoman was seen walking through the business with wet hair and not wearing a mask, while the stylist could be seen walking behind her with a black mask on. Salons in the city have been shut down since March.

Pelosi responded to criticism about her visit—which largely came from Republicans—saying that she was “set up” by the hair salon owner. “I take responsibility for trusting the word of the neighborhood salon that I have been to many times,” Pelosi told reporters last week. “When they said they could accommodate people one at a time, and we can set up that time, I trusted that.”

Salon owner Erica Kious
San Francisco salon owner Erica Kious speaks in a Zoom news conference with reporters on Sept. 3, 2020. (Screenshot/Courtesy of Erica Kious)

“The salon owes me an apology for setting me up,” Pelosi added.

Erica Kious, the owner of the salon, asserted that Pelosi’s claims were false.

“There was no way I could’ve set that up,” Kious said. “I’ve had a camera system in there for five years. I mean, I didn’t go in there and turn cameras on as soon as she walked in and set her up. So that is absolutely false.”

This week, Kious said that she is closing down her business after receiving “a lot of negativity” toward her business, according to an interview with Fox News. “I’m actually afraid to go back. … It’s a little scary and sad,” she said. “I do have a lot of positive calls and text messages from clients. But other than that, nothing but negativity.”

Meanwhile, a GoFundMe set up for Kious has raised more than $336,000.