As Connecticut's hair salons and barbershops reopen, the most important consideration will be the health and safety of employees and patrons. Hair salons & barbershops are high-contact environments that necessitate interaction in violation of social distancing rules; however, adherence to the rules developed by the State of Connecticut can mitigate the risk this contact poses. Businesses should exercise caution throughout the phases of reopening, ensuring strict adherence to the protocols listed here. Those businesses that are not able to meet these by May 20, shall delay opening until they are able.
While these rules provide a way for hair salons and barbershops to reopen as safely as possible, risks to customers and employees cannot be fully mitigated. Customers who choose to visit hair salons and barbershops during this time should be aware of potential risks. Individuals over the age of  or with other health conditions should not visit hair salons & barbershops, but instead continue to stay home and stay safe.
Businesses shall take these rules as the minimum baseline of precautions needed to protect public health in Connecticut. Individual businesses should take additional measures as recommended by industry guidelines or by common sense applied to their particular situation. We urge customers to stay vigilant and pay attention as to whether establishments they frequent are faithfully implementing these rules.
STATE GUIDANCE FOR HAIR SALONS & BARBERSHOPS
These rules are intended to help hair salons and barbershops safely get back to work. The information here can be supplemented with guidance from professional organizations and by other industry groups, some of which are listed below. These rules may be updated.
Professional Beauty Association
Associated Hair Professionals
American Barber Association
Occupational Safety and HealthAdministration
PLAN FOR REOPENING
Share these rules with your employees and inform them of any additional specific measures being taken in response to COVID-19.
Appoint a program administrator who is accountable for implementing these rules.
The employer shall institute a training program and ensure employee participation in the program. Training shall be provided at no cost to the employee and during working hours. The training materials shall be presented in the language and at the literacy level of the employees. Employers shall continuously update staff on changes to these Sector Rules. The training shall include:
• Guidelines outlined in this document
• Protocols on how to clean and use cleaning products (including disinfectants) safely.
Additional guidance can be found here:
NOTE: If any on-site duties are subcontracted, it is the employer's responsibility to ensure subcontractors are also appropriately trained.
Develop cleaning checklists that incorporate these rules. Ensure it is clear which employees are responsible for implementing the plans.
Estimate required personal protection for employees and begin procuring.
Complete a thorough cleaning of facility prior to reopening, including, but not limited to:
• Bathrooms, shampoo bowls, chairs and headrests, shears, combs, brushes, tweezers, razors, styling tools, rolling carts
Stagger shift start/stop times, break times, and lunchtimes to minimize contact across employees.
Maintain a log of employees on premise over time, to support contact tracing.
Complete the self-certification on the DECD website to receive a Reopen CT badge. Once complete, businesses can choose to post the badge on-site and on social media to advertise adherence to CT rules and build customer confidence
Post clear signage that reinforces new policies, like:
• Visits by appointment only
• Social distancing, cleaning, and disinfection protocols
• Personal protection protocols (facemasks, gloves) for customers and employees
• Employees shall stay home if sick/experiencing symptoms
• Customers shall not enter if they are experiencing symptoms
• Additional signage can be found here:
For facilities with central ventilation systems, increase ventilation rates and increase the percentage of outdoor air that circulates into the system where possible. For facilities where a central ventilation system is not used, window air conditioning units or unit ventilators should be adjusted to maximize fresh air intake into the system; blower fans should be set on low speed and pointed away from room occupants to the extent possible. Ceiling fans should be adjusted so that fins are rotating in a direction that draws air up toward the ceiling rather than down onto occupants. Window fans should be turned to exhaust air out of the window in the direction of the outdoors. Window fans that blow air into a room or free-standing fans that only serve to circulate existing air around a room should not be used.
SOCIAL DISTANCING MARKERS
Install visual social distancing markers to encourage customers to remain 6 ft apart (e.g. at reception desk).
• Rearrange space to maintain 6 ft of distance between customers and limit movement of employees within facility
• Stagger workstations and shampoo bowls
• Install physical barriers where possible
• Ask customers to wait in cars till appointment time; Close waiting rooms
• Blow drying only when necessary
DISCRETE WORK ZONES
Where possible, segment the workspace into discrete zones, prevent movement between zones and close spaces where employees congregate (e.g. hair stylists work at same station during workday to minimize overlap).
Close or remove amenities non-essential to businesses' main function, including:
• Magazines, pamphlets, other waiting room materials
• Customer-facing water and coffee machines
Install touchless appliances wherever possible, including:
• Paper towel, soap dispensers, water fountains.
• Doors: make doors no touch or have a door person during high volume times.
HOTLINE FOR VIOLATIONS
Post clear signage that includes the state hotline (211) for employees and customers to report potential violations of these rules
PERSONAL PROTECTION FOR EMPLOYEES
• Employees/practitioners are required to wear face shields or eye protection (e.g. goggle with side protection) and a facemask or other cloth face covering that completely covers the nose and mouth. Employees that cannot wear a mask due to a medical condition must provide documentation to their employer.
• Gloves optional; if used they must be changed between customers.
• Gloves and eye protection are required when using cleaning chemicals.
EMPLOYERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR PROVIDING PERSONAL PROTECTION TOTHEIR EMPLOYEES
• If businesses do not have adequate personal protection, they cannot open.
PERSONAL PROTECTION FOR CUSTOMERS
• Customers are required to bring and wear a facemask or cloth face covering that completely covers the nose and mouth.
• Businesses have the right to refuse service to an individual who is not wearing a mask.
Hand sanitizer shall be made available at entrance points and common areas, where possible.
Ensure employees wash their hands routinely (at minimum, between customers) using soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Disinfect between customers. Allow disinfectant to soak in bowl for 10 minutes, then scrub down bowl and faucets/nozzles.
Clean and disinfect frequently, and implement use of cleaning log for tracking. Clean multiple times a day and hourly during busy times.
• Recommend posting signage encouraging reduced capacity in bathrooms, and reminding individuals to wash their hands and wear a mask
• Consider placing a wastebasket outside of the bathroom
LINENS AND CAPES
• Launder with aggressive detergents.
• Dry thoroughly and store in closed cabinets.
CLEANING OR DISINFECTING PRODUCTS, &/OR DISPOSABLE WIPES
Disinfectants are irritants and sensitizers and should be used cautiously. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at least daily and if shared after each use.
• Use products that meet EPA’s criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2 and that areappropriate for the surface. Prior to wiping the surface, allow the disinfectant to sit for the necessary contact time recommended by the manufacturer. Train staff on proper cleaning procedures to ensure safe and correct application of disinfectants.
• Clean and disinfect workstations and tools between customers, including:
• Station counters
• Styling tools
• Brushes and combs
• Rolling carts
• Drawers or any storage containers
• Product on station
• Chair and headrest
DAILY HEALTH CHECK
Ask employees resuming on-premise work to confirm they have not experienced COVID-19 CDC-defined symptoms and to monitor their own symptoms, including cough, shortness of breath, or any two of the following symptoms:
• Repeated shaking with chills
• Muscle pain
• Sore throat
• New loss of taste or smell
Employees should stay home if sick.
IN THE EVENT OF A POSITIVE
Employees shall inform their employers, and follow state testing and contact tracing protocols. In addition:
• Employee should contact local public health to initiate contact tracing.
• Recommend 24-hour passive decontamination in the event of a positive case, and follow CDC guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting.
• Recommend employer notify landlord of positive case within 24 hours; landlord to promptly disseminate relevant information to other tenants on the movement of the infected individual.
• Recommend landlord notification to tenants include link to CDC guidelines explainingwhat you should do if you suspect you were exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19
• Additional information can be accessed at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/general-business-faq.htm
Employers may not retaliate against workers for raising concerns about COVID-19 related safety and health conditions.
• Additional information for the public sector can be accessed at www.connosha.com
• Additional information can be accessed at www.whistleblowers.gov
Employers shall adhere to federal guidance pertaining to paid leave for employees and provide this guidance to employees. Employers shall post the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) Department of Labor poster. The poster can be accessed at: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/posters
• Additional guidance can be accessed at: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employee-paid-leave