Companies across New York City are getting on board while special police units target looters and rioters, and overseas warns the few travelers who are not banned from entry to avoid them for fear of post-election rioting.
Dozens of Manhattan retailers, including stores on Fifth Avenue and SoHo, have boarded their windows in anticipation of post-election rioting on Tuesday, and similar scenes are playing out in Washington DC and LA.
While many offices remain closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a small number of medical and dental offices are tacitly telling patients that they will close on November 4th.
New York's restaurants and bars, still struggling to recover after months of closure, are cautiously waiting to see what happens.
Industry experts say many pull their outdoor dining furniture inward but stay open in the hope of finding a deal.
Small retailers are "afraid" of possible looting, but "more afraid" of another lockdown. So they choose to stay open for the meantime and risk their inventory.
Canada and Australia are urging citizens to avoid parts of the US where demonstrations are taking place for fear of potential violence, although travel from both countries is currently banned due to the pandemic.
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West Broadway shops in Manhattan's SoHo have their windows boarded up on Monday, and many are closing temporarily in anticipation of the election riot
American Eagle on the corner of Broadway and Houston was boarded up, as was the building next to it
Workers outside Zara in SoHo, Manhattan, stood in front of windows Monday ahead of Tuesday's election, which police fear could spark riot and looting
Hugo Boss on Monday in Soho. In June, many stores in the legendary shopping district were ravaged by looters
West Broadway in Soho on Monday. New York streets were emptier than usual as the city was quieter due to COVID, cooler temperatures and anticipation of Tuesday's elections
Sephora was also boarded up on Monday. Most stores will remain open, but with reduced opening hours on Tuesdays to allow staff to vote
Forever 21 in Soho on Monday had "We're open!" There were signs on the plywood panels to still attract customers
The Eden Art Gallery in SoHo was also boarded up Monday before possible rioting. The art gallery will be closed until Friday
Despite Mayor Bill de Blasio claiming Monday morning that there was no particular threat, the NYPD's Elite Strategic Response Group, composed of a group of 600 police officers on bicycles, is preparing for the worst.
"We hope for the best this week, but we are prepared for the worst. People out there have encouraged themselves.
The NYPD's largest union said public safety was at stake in response to a video tweeted by CNN's Wolf Blitzer about the riots
"We're going through unprecedented times. But we're prepared for anything that might happen," deputy chief John J. D & # 39; Adamo told the New York Post this week.
The Sergeants & # 39; Benevolent Association – the NYPD's largest union – warned on Twitter that "public safety is at stake".
& # 39; NYC and NYS need a change. Laws are not being enforced and violence continues to hit our streets, "the union said in a tweet as it endorsed Republican Congress candidate Nicole Malliotakis.
Previously, the union reacted angrily to a tweet from CNN's Wolf Blitzer who shared a video of boarded-up streets in Washington DC saying it was something he had never seen before an election.
“If the media were telling the truth and reporting both sides fairly about political and police incidents, we might not be dealing with everyday unrest.
"Take a bow, Wolf, you failed with the other media and now public safety is at stake," the union said.
Police officers clashed with BLM protesters in downtown Brooklyn last week after a peaceful protest turned violent.
Lafayette Street in New York City was largely boarded up before the riots on Monday
An office building in Times Square is nailed up on November 1st ahead of the election
Shops around 34th Street Subway were also boarded up ahead of Tuesday's elections. The subway is still closed every night for intensive cleaning
Workers enter a shop in Times Square in New York, United States, on November 1, 2020
The above picture shows the entrance to the Plaza Hotel, which is on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Central Park South
This week's protests follow months of unrest and anger against the police that many say they have never seen before.
"I was a cop during Occupy Wall Street and I thought this was the worst I've ever seen, but I was wrong.
The ultra-rich New Yorkers hire armed guards to prepare for riot
New York City's affluent elite are hiring armed guards in the run-up to the elections.
At the Time Warner Center on Columbus Circle, managers use off duty police officers with submachine guns to keep watch, according to the New York Post.
Other top buildings, like 220 Central Park South on Billionaire & # 39; s Row, say they are already well guarded but they are taking extra precautions, e.g. B. to keep the entrances locked at night.
"In 16 years I've never seen anything like this. We get bottles, bricks, you name it, thrown at us now," said one who wanted to remain anonymous.
As police actively prepare for possible riots this week, some companies are waiting to see whether or not to close.
Andrew Rigie, director of the New York Hospitality Alliance, told DailyMail.com on Monday morning that the restaurants were not on board yet.
It's mostly retailers who are nervous about looting, especially considering how much of it was seen across town over the summer amid the riot over the George Floyd murder.
& # 39; Many are scared. Although it seems to depend on the neighborhood. It seems that retailers and restaurants are the farmers in a game beyond means and influence. Most just want to be left alone.
"There are great fears of future lockdowns beyond the potential for unrest," said Bruce Backman, a spokesman for a coalition of small retailers.
In Washington DC, Fannie Mae, a federal mortgage loan company, said it would be closing its offices all week "out of caution."
FreedomWorks, a conservative advocacy group, has also closed its doors.
Most travelers from other countries are still prohibited from entering the USA. However, some of the few who are allowed in will be asked to avoid it.
Australia advises citizens not to travel at all. In a statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said: “Protests and demonstrations are continuing in several US cities.
"Avoid areas where protests are taking place because of the continuing potential for violence."
People who have been to mainland Europe, China, Iran, Brazil, the United Kingdom and Ireland are still prohibited from entering the US under COVID-19 rules.
Canada is still advising residents not to travel overseas, but those who do are also now urged to avoid protest and demonstration areas after several nights of violence in Philadelphia over police shooting of Walter Wallace Jr.
Australia – which has banned people from leaving the country anyway – also urges people not to travel anywhere in the US because of the "possible violence".
Canada says on its tourism website, “There have been demonstrations in Philadelphia since the police shot an American citizen on October 26, 2020.
There were clashes between demonstrators and police.
Protests and demonstrations have taken place in several US cities since May 25, 2020. There were clashes between demonstrators and police, which included the use of tear gas. Confrontations have resulted in casualties.
"More protests could take place and local authorities could impose additional curfews without notice."
Both countries are issuing the guidelines, although bans are already in place on anyone leaving their country due to COVID-19.
They have opened stores in Washington for weeks.
& # 39; We have to be ready. They smashed the windows and just walked out with everything, ”said Ali Khan 66, who works in a now barricaded liquor store in downtown Washington where thousands of dollars worth of goods were stolen during protests in June.
Washington DC stores and offices are also closing their windows before the riot breaks out later in the week
A restaurant with front windows in case of street riots during the upcoming 2020 general election in Washington DC
A worker works on a fence pile near a security checkpoint on the south side of the White House in Washington the day before the US presidential election
Mayor Muriel Bowser said, “Some people want to cause chaos and trouble. We are preparing to keep the city safe. & # 39;
In Kenosha, Wisconsin, there are fears of unrest similar to earlier this year. During the riot, 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse, a youth vigilante, shot dead two BLM protesters. He is now charged with murder, but his arrest has become a focus of the national divide. Many believe he was a patriot defending the city from looters.
"I'll always worry about violence, but at this point it's just speculation," said Andy Berg, a member of the Kenosha County's board of directors.
Sheriff David Beth said people like Rittenhouse are inflaming the situation.
They came in wanting to intimidate, frighten, and create confrontation. And that's exactly what they did, "Beth said in an October interview with Wisconsin radio station WTMJ.
"And we had a 17-year-old who shouldn't have carried an assault rifle through the streets of Kenosha … I couldn't have wished for a worse ending for Tuesday night," he said.
Workers step into the windows of the Hugo Boss store in City Center DC in Washington on Monday, November 2, 2020
Starbucks in Washington DC was also boarded up on Monday ahead of the possible riot