Under Gov. Justice’s reopening plan, West Virginia Strong — The Comeback,
restaurants and bars may open indoor facilities at 50% capacity, as well as offering
outdoor service and take-away and delivery service. Governor Justice has issued the
following guidance to mitigate the exposure and spread of COVID-19 among foodservice workers and patrons.
These guidelines, in addition to the guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (WV DHHR), will help West Virginians
transition back to safe dining outside of their homes. Businesses are allowed and encouraged to implement more stringent protocols as they see fit.
As your business reviews and implements these new measures, we encourage you to share and discuss them with your employees and your customers. Communicating enhanced cleaning and sanitization practices will make workers and patrons feel more confident in your restaurants. Failure to adhere to these guidelines may result in suspension of a restaurant’s or bar’s license to operate or its ABCA license, as applicable, and/or other appropriate enforcement measures.
Note: Effective as of July 7, 2020, all individuals over the age of 9 are required to wear face coverings when in confined, indoor spaces, other than one’s residence or while actively engaged in the consumption of food and/or beverage, and when not able to adequately social distance from other individuals who do not reside in the same household, pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Order 50-20.
Per CDC Guidance, exempt from this requirement are:
• children younger than 2 years old,
• anyone who has trouble breathing through a face covering, and
• persons who unable are to remove th face covering without assistance.
Note Further: Cabinet secretaries, agency heads, and other officials and managers should likewise consult local, state, and federal guidance, including Guidance for Malls and Similar Facilities, A Guide to Safely Reopening Larger Retail Stores, and A Guide to Safely Opening Restaurants and Bars, as applicable, to determine additional best practices.
o Plan: Develop and implement appropriate policies, in accordance with federal, state, and local regulations and guidance, and informed by industry best practices:
o Prepare the building for reopening;
o Develop a plan to control or monitor access points and update visitation policies;
o Consider traffic flow and occupancy limitations:
- Should walking patterns be changed to be one way?
- Does the number of entrances need to be limited to control occupancy?
- Do the entrances and exits need to be staffed to manage occupancy?
o Prepare your employees for their return to work;
o Create a social distancing plan to manage and reduce excessive employee interaction;
o Create a plan for personal protective equipment (PPE) and physical barriers, with special consideration for employees who come in contact with the general public, and those who are at-risk (e.g., elderly or immunocompromised);
o Reduce touch points to the maximum extent possible;
o Increase cleaning frequency and the availability of hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and other DIY cleaning products;
o Establish an open line of communication with employees regarding safety;
o Screening: Screen employees reporting to work daily and all those who enter the building for COVID-19 symptoms with the following questions:
• Temperature checks?
• Have you been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19?
• Are you experiencing a cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat?
• Have you had a fever in the last 48 hours?
• Have you had new loss of taste or smell?
• Have you had vomiting or diarrhea in the last 24 hours?
• Sick employees: Direct any employee or visitor who exhibits COVID-19 symptoms (i.e., answers yes to any of the screening questions or who is running a fever above 100.4 degrees) to leave the premises immediately and seek medical care and/or COVID-19 testing, per CDC guidelines. Employers should maintain the confidentiality of any and all health information.
o Training: Train all employees on the importance and expectation of increased frequency of handwashing, the use of hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol, and provide clear instruction to avoid touching hands to face.
o Cleaning: Implement workplace cleaning and disinfection practices, according to CDC guidelines, with regular sanitization of common surfaces. Ensure that staffing and supplies available for such facilities is sufficient to enable enhanced sanitization and cleaning measures in accordance with appropriate CDC guidelines.
o Monitor: Monitor your employees for indicative symptoms and keep an open line of communication. Encourage workers to report any safety and health concerns to the employer.
o Hygiene: Provide a place to wash hands or alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60% alcohol.
o PPE: Per Executive Order 50-20, all individuals over the age of 9 are required to use face coverings (masks, bandannas, face shields, etc.) when in confined, indoor spaces, other than one’s residence or while actively engaged in the consumption of food and/or beverage, and when not able to adequately social distance from other individuals who do not reside in the same household.
o Tracing: Develop and implement policies and procedures for employee contact tracing following employee with a positive COVID-19 test and inform the local health department of such positive test and tracing.
o Phase in: If possible, return employees to work in phases and spread out shifts to reduce excessive or unnecessary interaction.
o Cabinet secretaries and agency heads are encouraged to review their workforce needs to phase in employees as operations warrant as physical offices and facilities resume more normal operations.
o Telework: Develop policies to allow for telework.
o Review, analyze, and consider technology needs and constraints related to your agency’s capacity for telework.
o Consider making special accommodations for employees that are members of a vulnerable population, for example those that are over 65 or those with infants at home, including encouraging teleworking to the maximum extent possible among other measures.
o Touch points: Contact with doorknobs, switches, buttons, and any point of sale equipment should be limited to the maximum extent possible and frequently cleaned and sanitized. The number of touch points in the building should be reduced and limited to the maximum extent possible. The entrance/exit doors should be sanitized routinely.
o Visitors: To the greatest extent possible, visitors and the general public should be encouraged to make appointments. Visitation by individuals for reasons other than to conduct business should be limited to the greatest extent possible. Visitors should be directed to enter through a designated entry point and, to the greatest extent possible, screened prior to entry. Appropriate PPE, including face coverings, should be encouraged.
o Traffic: Install physical barriers and/or visual cues (for example, tape floors, sidewalks) and signs to ensure that employees, staff, and visitors, if any, maintain appropriate social distancing.
o Cooperation: Plan for potential COVID-19 cases and work with local health department officials when needed (i.e., monitor and trace COVID-19 cases, deep-clean facilities).
o Signage: Post extensive signage on health policies, including the following documents in the workplace to help educate all on COVID-19 best practices:
• CDC: Stop the Spread of Germs
• CDC: COVID-19 Symptoms
Where employees must come into contact with the general public and/or customers, consider additional precautionary measures to protect the safety of employees, visitors, and the citizens of the State of West Virginia.
o Consider further limitations on existing occupancy limits;
o Enforce reasonable and appropriate social distancing requirements in all areas, including waiting areas;
o As appropriate, establish an appointment schedule to reduce excessive or unnecessary interaction;
o Institute measures to limit close physical interaction between employees and visitors; and
o Per Executive Order 50-20, all individuals over the age of 9 are required to use face coverings (masks, bandannas, face shields, etc.) when in confined, indoor spaces, other than one’s residence or while actively engaged in the consumption of food and/or beverage, and when not able to adequately social distance from other individuals who do not reside in the same household. As appropriate, require PPE, including appropriate face coverings, for all employees and visitors.