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NYC Launching New Campaign To Support Chinatown Businesses Amid Coronavirus Fears

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – While there are no confirmed coronavirus cases in New York City, business in Chinatown have still been impacted by the outbreak.

Workers report a major slump in sales over the past few weeks.

"It's very slow, like 60% down," Szu Liow, of Mama Eatery on Mulberry Street, told CBS2's Reena Roy. "My owner, yeah, very sad about the business."

City officials want to remind people it's safe to enjoy all the neighborhood has to offer. So today they're kicking off a campaign, called "Show Some Love to Chinatown."

Leaders Announce 'Show Some Love to Chinatown' Campaign

The campaign encourages people to buy meals or items from neighborhood businesses and take photos at the popular Baxter Street Triangle to qualify for a Valentine's Day themed raffle.

CORONAVIRUS: CDC Latest | Guidance For Travelers | NY Health Dept. | NY Hotline: 1-(888)-364-3065 | NJ Health Dept. | NJ Hotline: 1-(800)-222-1222

One woman who works in the neighborhood told Roy she wants to support them by continuing to frequent her favorite spots.

"I still go to the restaurants at lunch," she said. "They have their rent to pay... You don't want to hurt them more than they're already hurting."

During the Lunar New Year Parade last Sunday, there was a rallying cry as revelers came together, despite fears circulating across the city.

"We want to make sure New Yorkers know that they can come out and support all these small businesses, because they are the backbone of the city's economy," Department of Small Business Services Commissioner Gregg Bishop said.

Health officials also say it is important to keep the numbers in perspective, with the flu much deadlier this winter.

All seven people tested for coronavirus in the city have come back negative.

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