After seven weeks of heavy restrictions, the state of California is taking careful steps towards reopening. As per health officials the unrestricted and unchecked reopening of businesses can cause numbers to spike up. Gov. Newsom has outlined COVID-19 office guidelines for Californians to return to workplaces. 

In the second phase of a four-step reopening plan, small retailers, as well as bookstores and clothing shops, are allowed to open their stores, however, retailers cannot have customers in the stores and are being asked to provide curbside service. Since warehouses pose very little threat to the virus exposure, the state government has allowed them to open with certain modifications. 

The state government has also allowed local governments to go ahead with quicker reopening provided if the county meets the certain testing and tacking requirements. The county must also ensure that their healthcare system is good enough to handle a potential surge. However, some local governments have announced that they would take more time to gauge the situation and will slowly move towards the reopening. 

Shopping Malls, dine-in restaurants, and corporate offices are allowed to reopen with the condition to strictly comply with the SOPs provided by the government and health authorities. 

Guidelines for Sit-Down and Dine-in Restaurants 

Here are some of the important guidelines for restaurant reopening: 

  • Salad bars and buffets must have sneeze guards
  • Bar areas inside restaurants are to remain closed 
  • Cutlery, napkins, and cups must be thoroughly cleaned
  • Sterilize tables, chairs, and all frequently touched surfaces
  • Discard reusable paper menus or have a disposable menu or post the menus online so that diners can view them on their phones. Digital menu boards can also be a good option. 
  • Make hand sanitizer readily available to guests

Guidelines for Shopping Malls 

Important guidelines for the reopening of shopping malls: 

  • Install sneeze guards at check-out counters
  • Ensure that customers adhere to social distancing practices 
  • Regularly disinfect all frequently-touched surfaces such as ATM and benches 
  • Turn off all the public drinking water coolers 
  • Encourage customers to avoid cash and make payments by cards. Install hands-free payment systems where possible
  • Reduce the accumulation of respiratory droplets by increasing ventilation

Guidelines for Offices

In order to open offices, companies must follow the following rules: 

  • Install air filters in the workspace
  • Install sneeze guards and plexiglass where required 
  • Train and encourage employees on safety, self-screening and advise them to practice proper hygiene
  • Daily temperature checks and symptoms screenings of all employees 
  • Redesign office incorporating social distancing guidelines and ensure 6 feet of spacing between workers 
  • Close or restrict entrance to common areas
  • Suspend thumb verifications and do extra sanitization of high-traffic areas like kitchens, washrooms, and elevators 
  • Require employees to disinfect personal work areas
  • Provide PPE (personal protective equipment) to employees who are more vulnerable to public exposure 
  • Give more paid leaves to senior-aged employees and take care of those with underlying health conditions 

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