The Federal Government, the CDC, and Alabama’s Safer at Home Order provide guidelines for local employers to reopen their operations in a way that prioritizes public health and helps prevent the transmission of COVID-19 amongst both employees and consumers.
Basic guidelines for all businesses include:
- Maintaining six feet of separation between employees
- Regularly disinfecting frequently used items and surfaces
- Encouraging hand washing
- Facilitating remote working arrangements; and
- Minimizing employee travel
Responsible Alabama Business Owners Struggle with Extensive Rules and Regulations
However, the rules, regulations, and requirements that Alabama business owners must adhere to are extensive and continuously evolving,, making it challenging for local companies to know how to open their operations safely and responsibly. Some of the most frequently asked questions that Alabama business owners may have as they reopen their organizations include:
Question: Do different businesses have to follow different reopening protocols?
Answer: All businesses should adhere to the standard procedures outlined in the Safer at Home order. However, Alabama offers more specific details on regulations pertaining to retail, close-contact service providers, athletic facilities, and entertainment venues, which are outlined in paragraph 5 of the Safer at Home order.
Question: Can retail stores offer delivery or curbside services?
Answer: Yes. Alabama’s Safer at Home Order requires certain categories of retail stores to only allow employees inside the building. While this precludes customers from coming in, it does not prohibit businesses from offering delivery or curbside services, as long as the state adheres to all other regulations and provisions.
Question: Do I have to limit the number of customers of guests inside of my business at any given time?
Answer: Possibly, depending on whether or not there’s a “gathering” at your business. The Safer at Home Order prohibits non-work related gatherings that consist of 10 or more persons or non-work related gatherings of any size that can not support a consistent 6-foot distance between all participants. In large, uncrowded stores where consumers have ample space, a “gathering” is unlikely to occur, even if there are more than 10 persons inside. However, a group of just 10 people congregating in a confined space for an extended duration of time would likely be designated a gathering.
Question: Am I required to monitor the health of my employees?
Answer: The Safer at Home Order suggests that Alabama employers should take “reasonable steps” to monitor employees for signs of illness or indicative symptoms of COVID-19. Anyone in the workforce who is visibly symptomatic or sick should not be allowed to work. Additionally, staff members should not be allowed to return to work until after being cleared by a physician.
Question: Should I use specialized cleaning and disinfectant products to help keep my staff and customers safe?
Answer: Business owners should practice consistent cleaning and disinfection of high-touch or high traffic surfaces, areas, and items multiple times throughout the day using products on the EPA’s list of approved disinfectants.
Question: Beyond internal cleaning practices, are there other measures I should take to help prevent the transmission of COVID-19?
Answer: A company that specializes in coronavirus demobilization solutions can help businesses across multiple industries reopen safely as well as help disinfect high traffic, high-touch surfaces to prevent the spread of COVID-19. A professional disinfection service provider will have the skills, training, and equipment needed to ensure your business meets both federal and state standards to help safeguard anyone in your building.
Contact Star Industrial Services Today
Star Industrial Services uses the latest equipment and training to develop customized coronavirus demobilization solutions. Contact us today to learn more about how we help Alabama business owners reopen their enterprises, safely and effectively.