GHRA submits proposed guidelines for the reopening of bars

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GHRA President Mary Rhodes (PNC file photo)

The Guam Hotel and Restaurant Association has submitted a set of proposed guidelines for the reopening of bars on Guam.

The guidelines were submitted to the Office of the Governor and the Department of Public Health and Social Services.

Guam is currently in PCOR 2 and while some restrictions have been eased for restaurants and other establishments, bars remain closed.

GHRA President Mary Rhodes said that she had been in meetings with bar owners and other industry professionals to review CDC guidelines for bars before drafting the proposed guidelines.

The proposed guidelines include sections on signs and messages, use of masks, physical distancing, communal spaces, hand and respiratory hygiene, and ventilation requirements, among others.

Rhodes said they also took into consideration existing requirements in the Guam Food Code and health and safety rules that Public Health looks at.

The difference, she stressed, is that their plan is more comprehensive.

She added that they also took into consideration the cost of implementing these requirements. The plan allows operations to be flexible and doesn’t require everybody to move in the same direction right away.

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“There are flexible ways to work with these guidelines. There are some things that are a must or are required and must be implemented but it does not cost them a lot to implement those things,” Rhodes said.

Rhodes also clarified that a lot of the bars have actually submitted their own individual plans to DPHSS as early as May 2020.

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“Knowing that it will take some time for businesses to get used to this and also the consumers, I know it’s going to be a long road for the bars and I also know that customers are going to get used to this kind of environment … it’ll be easier to implement these because they have been impacted for some time,” Rhodes said.

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