COVID-19 has changed the way we as business owners, employees, and customers need to operate-for the un-seeable future. If you’ve remained open or plan on re-opening your restaurant, there are strict health and safety regulations you will need to follow to keep everyone safe. We’ve put together some of these for you.
What is the new normal going to look like?
How to protect yourself and slow the spread if you are a food worker
- Don’t go to work if you’re having symptoms.
- Don’t return to work until you’ve met self-isolation guidelines.
- Notify your supervisor if you have a sick family member, even if you feel fine.
- Limit close contact to others and remain at least 6ft away when possible.
- Wear a cloth mask in public.
- Encourage touchless payment methods and minimize handling of cash, cc, reward cards and mobile devices.
- If you do need to exchange money, don’t touch your face, place money on counter when exchanging and wipe the counter as well as your hands with sanitizer.
- Continuously clean and disinfect surfaces and hands.
- Avoid contact with body fluids.
- Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
- Use tissues when coughing, sneezing or touching your face and dispose of them afterwards.
The steps you need to take if you are an employer
Reducing transmission amongst staff
- Actively encourage sick employees to stay home.
- Employees diagnosed with the virus should not return to work until after self-isolation criteria are met.
- Be aware that some of your staff may be higher risk than others due to other underlying conditions.
- Provide proper training for employees on hygiene.
- Provide appropriate materials for keeping clean like running water, soap, sanitizer, disinfectant, etc.
How can you keep your work environment clean, safe?
- Continue to practice social distancing
- Use partitions made of clear materials such as plexiglass with pass-through openings at top and bottom at checkouts.
- Move the electronic payment terminal/credit card reader farther away from the cashier.
- Identify alternative areas such as closed customer seating spaces to accommodate overflow volume.
- Continue to provide remote shopping alternatives for customers, including click-and-collect, delivery, curbside pick-up, and shop-by-phone to limit customers in the establishment. Set up designated pick-up areas.
- Place posters that encourage staying home when sick, cough and sneeze etiquette, and good hand hygieneat the entrance to the workplace.
- Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces within the establishments.
- Provide appropriate disposable disinfectant wipes, cleaner &/or spray for your employees to keep areas and hands clean.
- Follow all applicable local, state, and federal regulations and public health agency guidelines.
Where can you find more information?
Things are constantly changing, but make sure you stay as informed as you can.
The below sources can be utilized for more information on reducing the risk of exposures to COVID-19:
- Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) website
- NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Topic website
- CDC COVID19 website
- CDC COVID-19 Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Facility website
- OSHA COVID19 websiteexternal icon
- FDA Best Practices for Food Retailers During COVID-19 Pandemic websiteexternal icon
- FDA Food Safety and the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) websiteexternal icon
- US Department of Homeland Security websiteexternal icon
- CDCINFO: 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) | TTY: 1-888-232-6348 | website
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See you next week!
Your devoted hostess,