Here's how restaurants can open safely as part of phase three of the reopen plan
REGINA -- The Government of Saskatchewan has released guidelines for the reopening of restaurants as part of phase three.
Restaurants, bars, nightclubs, lounges, food courts, cafeterias, cafes, bistros and other similar food and beverage facilities are allowed to resume service on June 8.
These establishments have to operate at 50 per cent capacity, with reduced seating capacity, to limit the size of gatherings and promote physical distancing.
There are several health and safety guidelines businesses must follow, for indoor and outdoor seating areas.
Seating will be limited to 50 per cent of maximum capacity, with at least two metres of space between dining groups. Businesses should also install physical barriers when groups cannot be separated adequately.
A maximum of six people can sit together at a table, with only member of the same dining party. Larger groups will need to be sat at more than one table, with appropriate distance between tables.
Businesses also need to ensure that aisles between tables are wide enough to allow room for people to maintain physical distance.
Physical distancing should also be encouraged wherever possible for customers and staff.
If staff are unable to maintain two metres of distance from coworkers, workers may need to self-monitor personal health or be supervised by staff in the workplace. Employees are still encouraged to continue following proper hygiene practices.
Servers and hosts, who are unable to maintain a two metre distance from customers, must also wear a procedural/surgical mask.
CLEANING AND SANITATION
Frequent cleaning and disinfecting is important to prevent the spread of the virus.
A cleaning schedule should be instituted and staff should be assigned and trained for additional cleaning, sanitizing and disinfection duties. A Health Canada approved, alcohol based hand sanitizer or hand washing stations should be placed in high traffic areas.
Tables should be cleaned and sanitized after each customer. Table cloths must be removed and laundered between customers. Any food contact surfaces must also be sanitized, or immediately rinsed following disinfection.
Common touch items, like condiments, salt, pepper, napkin holders, menus and special displays or décor, must be removed from tables.
Menus must also be cleaned and disinfected between each customer. Menus that cannot be cleaned and sanitized, like paper menus, must be discarded after use.
The province is suggesting using alternative menus, such as digital menu boards, online menus, large chalkboards, or online pre-ordering.
FOOD AND BEVERAGE SERVICE
Customers should consider calling ahead or making reservations to help businesses manage the numbers of people inside. Waiting areas should be rearranged to ensure physical distancing can be maintained.
One way traffic should be encouraged within the restaurant where possible.
Recreation areas in restaurants, like play areas, dance floors, VLTs, electronic games, dart boards, pool tables and karaoke, are not allowed to open.
Live entertainment is not yet allowed in phase three, but will be considered for future phases.
Restaurants are encouraged to develop measures for servers to limit contact with customers, such as having guests pour their own beverages, removing one chair per table to use the space for the server to stand, leaving food and drinks at the front of the table, avoiding touching cups and glasses for refills; and providing packaging for customers to pack their own unfinished food items.
The number of customers inside the business should be monitored, to ensure the maximum capacity is not surpassed.
Buffets and other self-serve food options will remain closed. Cafeteria-style food facilities, where staff serve customers, are allowed, but food must be protected from customer contact and cross contamination.
Rolled silverware should be used instead of pre-setting tables.
Bar areas can be open for sitting, as long as physical distancing is maintained between groups and between individual customers. All items behind the bar, like glassware, dishware and garnishes, must be protected from exposure to customers and cross-contamination.
There should be no movement of customers between the bar and eating areas.
Online and telephone orders with delivery, drive-through or pick-up services should continue to be offered and encouraged.
Customer’s personal items, such as wallets, purses or jackets, cannot be put on take-out or payment counters.
Customers who are sick or on self-isolation cannot be admitted to restaurants.
Read the latest version of the reopen plan, updated May 22, here.