A county mayor is facing criticism after posing for a picture inside of a crowded barbershop. Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez is under hot water after his potential "feel good" moment turned into anger when the photo was posted on his Instagram. It appeared to show the Florida mayor breaking social distancing rules as the county continues its plan to reopen businesses.
Looking to show support for a barbershop that was closed for two months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Gimenez, with his mask on, visited the Miami Lakes Barbershop for a photo-op of how businesses were handling the "Phase Yellow" initiative.
"It was a pleasure visiting the folks at the Miami Lakes Barbershop as they reopened on the first day of Miami-Dade’s Yellow Phase," the mayor's post reads. "We continue working on the next phase of businesses opening."
Ten people, including Gimenez, can be seen in the shop, wearing masks.
State representative Cindy Polo, whose district includes Miami Lakes, sharply criticized the mayor in a tweet, accusing Gimenez of not leading by example.
While we continue to Rush and Open, let's remember all the sacrifices we made during the last few months. It's a sh… https://t.co/8n7Jc9MnbK— Cindy Polo (@Cindy Polo)1589897052.0
Others, both on Twitter and Instagram, seemed to agree with Polo. One user was even upset at the fact that a child was sitting on the floor of the establishment.
@CindyPoloFL103 Why is there a kid on the floor? Oh my God.— sue demelio (@sue demelio)1589962949.0
While outrage is fueling on social media, Patty Abril, a spokesperson for Gimenez, told Narcity that the barbershop had "markings on the floor that delineate the required social distancing" and that the barbershop had "removed chairs previously used for customers waiting inside."
She also added that customers were waiting outside and that the angle of the photo "may make it appear that the people are closer together than they are."
I visited the Miami Lakes Barber Shop today as I checked on businesses that opened again entering into the Yellow P… https://t.co/eo3eSmJb65— Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez (@Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez)1589835028.0
While barbershops, restaurants, and retail outlets are open in the unincorporated areas of Miami-Dade, the county doesn't seem like they will cut anyone any slack for not following the social distance guidelines, not even elected officials.
*This article has been updated.