San Diego: Places of Worship, Hair Salons and Barbershops Can Open with Modifications

Houses of worship, hair salons and barbershops can all resume services, but they must implement a variety of safety measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the County Health and Human Services Agency announced today. All must complete and post the County’s Safe Reopening Plan before opening.

Places of worship will have to limit attendance to 25% of capacity, or 100 people or fewer, whichever of the two is smaller.

Worshippers not in the same household will have to sit or stand six feet apart. State guidance says houses of worship should consider discontinuing singing and other practices that increase the chance of virus transmission through exhaled droplets. They also should consider or modify practices that require sharing items.

The state also gave the green light for hair salons and barbershops to reopen. Employees will have to complete a health screening at the beginning and end of each shift and both stylists and customers must wear facial coverings for the duration of the hair appointment.

While the businesses may open immediately, certain services frequently offered are not yet allowed. This includes eyelash and eyebrow services, facials and shaves.

“As an increasing number of businesses reopen, San Diegans should continue to adhere to the safety guidelines we have implemented during the pandemic,” said Wilma J. Wooten, M.D., M.P.H, County public health officer. “Being in close proximity to non-household members increases the risk of being exposed to COVID-19 and people should wear a face covering and frequently wash their hands to prevent the spread of the virus.”

The state has not yet permitted nail salons to reopen. The county expects to receive further guidance about those businesses later.

Customers or employees should not enter any business if they have symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, or a new loss of taste or smell.

Changes to Health Order

The County also announced several additional changes to its public health order today. Going forward, all businesses will have to implement temperature and health screenings for employees. Businesses must also ensure that all employees wear facial coverings and maintain physical distancing.

Beginning Wednesday, one-on-one sports lessons are also allowed, as long as both the instructor and student comply with physical distancing and face covering requirements. Students and instructors should not share equipment.

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