MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Get ready for what Miami-Dade County is calling “The New Normal.”
That’s the title of the lengthy and highly detailed document released by the county on Wednesday that lays out rules and guidelines for restaurants, salons, retail stories and other non-essential businesses that plan to begin a gradual and limited reopening next Monday. The document calls for putting “stringent capacity and safety rules in place.”
The report focuses on extensive cleaning measures and protocols to enforce proper distancing requirements at businesses and it includes many guidelines and practices that we’re already seeing at essential stories, like social distancing markers, mandatory masks on employees and customers and hand sanitizer stations everywhere.
Restaurants have lots to do before opening in Miami-Dade. For instance, some of the requirements and guidelines include:
- Plastic barriers needed along counters & at cash registers
- Bar counters must be closed
- No more than 4 to a table, unless people live together
- Tables must be properly distanced
- Touchless trash can lids
- Employees must take their temperatures every day & self-report fever
- No self-service options
- Menus must be disposable or viewed on a personal device
- Restrooms must be single-use for opening phase
The report also recommends a restaurant employee who oversees workers in the kitchen and enforces strict distancing rules.
Some worry about whether everyone at restaurants will comply with the rules. Fran Laboy, a former nurse and a Miami-Dade County resident, said she’s been concerned about behavior she’s seen from people waiting outside restaurants for takeout.
“It’s the people that are waiting outside to get in that I’m concerned about,” she said. “As I see it, things that have takeout only, they’re not waiting with masks on, they’re waiting on top of one another, not having distancing.”
Retail stores will see other guidelines, including:
- Customer lines for fitting rooms & checkout must have floor markers 6 feet apart
- If customers handle or try on clothes, items must be cleaned before being returned to shelves
- Carts & baskets must be sanitized between uses
- Create one-way circulation inside stores
There are some additional rules and suggestions for salons and personal grooming businesses, like:
- If possible, install plastic barriers between salon chairs
- Customers must make an appointment & only customers receiving service may enter
- Hairdressers must wear masks & gloves, use single-use aprons & cannot share tools
- Customers must wear face masks but can remove them for services
- Workstations must be thoroughly cleaned after each customer
Lisda Alexander is a stylist. She’s concerned about making sure proper distancing precautions are taken.
“I’m not comfortable going back to work at full capacity,” she said. “The salon stations are not 6 feet apart. Our sinks are on top of each other. We’re bumping each other.”
There are lots of other rules and suggestions for businesses and offices beginning to reopen in this new normal. For instance, the county is encouraging people to avoid paying with cash and is reminding employers to keep a close watch on workers missing work, especially for respiratory infections. The county is also continuing to encourage telecommuting for workers who can work from home.