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Georgia Chamber postpones upcoming events amid coronavirus concerns

The Georgia Chamber of Commerce has postponed two of its upcoming conferences in Dunwoody and Statesboro amid concerns about the coronavirus outbreak.

Lisa Sherman, the chamber’s vice president of external affairs said the events were postponed “out of respect for those industries” that the events were aimed at. 

The March 23 event in Dunwoody, which was expected to include Sen. David Perdue, was set to focus on the “Future of Free Enterprise” and a March 25 event at Georgia Southern University was scheduled to discuss the “Future of Rural Healthcare.”


Sherman said the chamber wants to make sure they hold the events when an ample number of businesses and partners are able to attend, noting the postponements were motivated by a growing number of companies placing a hold on business travel.

She also noted that the health care discussion would be better suited for a time when industry professionals were less tied up elsewhere. She added the events had not been canceled and would be rescheduled for a later date.

» RELATED: A map of coronavirus cases in Georgia

Meanwhile, the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce says on its website that it is “continuing planned in-house events.”

However, it is taking measures such as making the chamber a “handshake-free zone.”

“Additionally, our facilities team is taking extra precautions to disinfect all door handles, tables and chairs before meetings and events,” according to the Chamber’s website.

Elsewhere throughout Atlanta and across the country, the virus has led to a string of cancellations. Last week, Atlanta-based CNN announced it would put a pause on its studio tours because of coronavirus concerns. 

» RELATED: CNN temporarily suspends studio tours amid coronavirus concerns

And the popular SXSW festival in Austin won’t be held this year because of the virus.

Health officials are encouraging people to avoid large gatherings and consider “social distancing.”

On its website, the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists recommendations for organizers of gatherings and “large community events.”

The CDC recommends organizers review their venue’s existing emergency operations, address prevention strategies, communicate about COVID-19 and “determine the need to postpone or cancel your events.”

» RELATED: What is a pandemic? How coronavirus compares to recent health epidemics

Concerns about the coronavirus have resulted in the cancellation of many events and large gatherings. The AJC will monitor these announcements and keep you informed about any postponements, rescheduling and cancellations, but it’s best to check with venues or event organizers before making plans to attend.

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