Chicago chamber warns to prepare for the worst for G8

Jan. 25, 2012 at 9:43 AM
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CHICAGO, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- A Chamber of Commerce leader says businesses should prepare for the worst when NATO and the Group of Eight hold summits in Chicago this May.

Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce President Jerry Roper urged downtown businesses to give their employees the option of working at home May 19-21, the Chicago Sun-Times reported Wednesday.

He said stores on Michigan Avenue and State Street should arrange for security outside their doors to avoid conflicts with the thousands of protesters expected during the summits.

Roper compared planning for the events to preparing for a disaster.

"If places need to be evacuated, you've got to know where to tell your employees to gather," he said. "The same things you would focus on for a disaster like the [1992] Loop flood have to be put in place for an event like this."

He said board-up services in the city should be placed on standby in the event that windows are broken by protesters.

The G8 is a global issues forum comprised of the United States, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Russia.

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