Super Saturday – Reopening your Restaurant or Café on or after 4 July 2020 – are you Covid-19 Safe?
The Government’s guidance ‘Keeping workers and customers safe during COVID-19 in restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway services’ applies to any food businesses where food and drink is sold for consumption at the venues, or for takeaway/ delivery. Complying with the guidance will enable your business to reopen on the 4 July.
The guidance sets out how to open workplaces safely, while minimising the risk of spreading COVID-19. Following a methodical approach, you can consider and mitigate the risks posed by the virus to staff, customers and contractors. The virus is transmitted in three main ways:
- Directly inhaled from droplets or aerosols
- Contaminated surfaces to hands/ face
- Contaminated hands to others or surfaces
The guidance requires you to control the risk of spreading the virus by elimination (asking sick people to stay away); and by using control measures such as social distancing; disinfecting hand contact surfaces; hand washing and using hand sanitisers at key moments; not touching eyes, mouth or nose with contaminated fingers or gloves; using sneezing/ coughing etiquette and increased ventilation.
Each business will need to prepare a risk assessment identifying the specific actions that should be taken, depending on the nature and size of their business, how it is organised, and managed. There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to this risk assessment. It is site specific. You need to consider your property; guest seating; how many customers you can accommodate; the food that’s prepared; how it will be served perhaps by tray or left at a collection point; toilet facilities, etc. Carry out your COVID-19 risk assessment just as you would for any other health and safety related hazard. This risk assessment must be done in consultation with unions or workers. You will need to provide additional training for your staff, so that everyone has the skills and confidence to handle COVID-19 related questions when you reopen. You should also display the Covid-19 secure poster in your property and on your website.
Many cafes and restaurants will serve a limited menu whilst the business gets used to this new approach. Your risk assessment should be reviewed every day for the first few weeks to allow the lessons that you’ve learned flow into improved control measures.
Don’t forget that you are asked to capture basic customer information to assist the NHS Track and Trace programme. This includes the customer’s name and phone number. An email address is not enough. Do read our earlier article about data privacy issues that you need to address here.
Get in touch if you need help with your risk assessment or a better understanding of your obligations.Back to Our Thinking →