“Safe in the South Bay” Program Aims to Reassure Public, Help Local Businesses & Restaurants Comply with County Health Order
By Dan Smith, Beach Cities Health District
A new program in four South Bay cities will highlight businesses that are actively working to protect their employees and customers and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 as Los Angeles County continues its Roadmap to Recovery. Los Angeles County indicated that over the weekends of May 30, June 6 and June 13, public health inspectors visited 3,751 establishments, and provided reopening assistance and information to 3,109 (83%) who were not in compliance with reopening protocols. Safe in the South Bay is aimed at supporting and ensuring that businesses are aware of the proper protocols to reopen safely and contributing to the road to economic recovery.
The “Safe in the South Bay” program has been created for restaurants and businesses in El Segundo, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach. The Chambers of Commerce from those cities have partnered with Beach Cities Health District (BCHD) to provide health guidance and a self-certification process related to Los Angeles County’s Safer at Work and in the Community Health Officer Order.
“Safe in the South Bay is a collaborative effort by the four Chambers of Commerce and BCHD to keep our community healthy,” said Tom Bakaly, CEO of BCHD. “The actions of residents and our local businesses will determine how long COVID-19 will impact our community. My hope is this program will act as a reminder to businesses and consumers of the health actions necessary to allow these businesses to reopen while we’re still dealing with the pandemic.”
The Safe in the South Bay program is open to all businesses in the four participating cities. To participate, businesses will need to self-certify that they are following the Los Angeles County reopening protocols, which include:
- Enforce use of face coverings for employees and customers
- Practice physical distancing of at least six feet
- Enact temperature/symptom checks for employees and customers
- Conduct regular cleanings and frequent disinfection
- Provide hand sanitizer for employees and customers
- Limit amount of contact required at point of purchase
- Post a copy of the Los Angeles County reopening protocol at the business’ entrance and distribute copies to employees
Each business must also fill out the Safe in the South Bay pledge. Businesses can access the Safe in the South Bay pledge at each Chamber’s website. They will fill out a pledge and can display the Safe in the South Bay seal at the entrance of their business.
The Safe in the South Bay seal is a way for consumers to easily identify businesses who have, in good faith, completed the self-certification process to reopen.
All businesses in the county need to plan, implement and post the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health’s reopening protocol in accordance with the Health Officer Order.
“Our local businesses want to do the right thing and the goal of Safe in the South Bay is to instill consumer confidence during this pandemic,” said Kelly Stroman, President and CEO of the Manhattan Beach Chamber of Commerce. “These businesses are following all the rules to keep their employees and customers as safe as possible as they reopen.”
“As our local economy reopens, we must remember that COVID-19 is still in our community,” said Maureen Hunt, President and CEO of the Hermosa Beach Chamber of Commerce. “We are committed to supporting businesses through this reopening process and know that recovery is contingent upon customers feeling safe to come back. So, the Safe in the South Bay program reaffirms what businesses are required to do to reopen and promotes consumer confidence to employees and customers.”
“Businesses need to reopen. Our neighbors want to get out and support our local shops and restaurants, but it needs to be done responsibly,” said Dominik Knoll, President of the Redondo Beach Chamber of Commerce. “The Safe in the South Bay pledge is an acknowledgment by these business owners that they are working hard to protect their customers, workers and neighbors. Everyone will benefit as long as our shops stay open.”
“After three months of lockdown, our restaurants and retailers are anxious to reopen,” said Marsha Hansen, President and CEO of the El Segundo Chamber of Commerce. “The Safe in the South Bay program demonstrates our shared responsibility and commitment as businesses to support the safety of our community and slow the spread of COVID-19. Our goal is to provide easy access to the most up-to-date information for businesses and to be a partner with local business to get our community back on its feet.”
Businesses looking to participate in the Safe in the South Bay program should contact their city’s Chamber of Commerce.