The Evolution of COVID-19 and Where We Are Today
It was 132 days ago when California went into a statewide “Shelter in Place” and the new “normal” was unknowingly upon us. As we look back on what was and learn to adapt to where we are now, questions continue to rise and doubts inevitably continue to surface. How will my business survive? How do I comply with the new regulations, laws and recommendations to reopen? How can I implement the safety measures and rigorous guidelines required while still managing to run a successful business? How do I best support my employees and their hesitations with returning to work? These questions, along with so many others may be at the forefront of your mind and understandably, extremely hard to address without HR guidance and consultation.
In late April, the Governor announced California would be taking a “phased” approach to reopening and continued to provide weekly, if not daily briefings on the importance of washing hands, remaining 6 feet apart, wearing your masks and what we needed to do as a state to reduce the spread of the virus to move towards reopening the economy.
In May, California confidently started to reopen businesses, optimistic about the state’s ability to maintain compliance with the strict protocols in place to mitigate the rise in positive cases. Once taken for granted, in-room dining, hair salons and barbershops were reopened, all with strict social distance requirements and reopening plans, but nonetheless, California businesses were beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. In June, California began to steadily continue to reopen and added several new businesses with the option to reopen, such as schools, day camps, bars and nail salons, to name a few. As the reopening continued to move forward, so did the added protections and safety measures, to include mandatory face coverings outside the home, along with business curfews.
Fast forward to today and we are in somewhat of a twilight zone, with California surpassing New York in total positive COVID cases in the country and business closures mandated once again. California is now rolling back the reopening of the state and struggling to contain the spread. It is likely that many businesses will not be able to survive another forced closure and staring at the unknown future of their business. As unemployment numbers increase and the uncertainties of the economy continue to rise, it is imperative businesses prepare and understand the added precautions and measures to remain open and/or anticipate reopening.
This pandemic has undoubtedly created a rollercoaster of emotions, and ever-evolving changes for businesses, employees and families. Our state has chosen creative ways and solutions to keep businesses open, while adhering to mandated criteria, such as Reopening Plans with detailed safety measures to protect employees and customers; posted guidelines; sick leave mandates, social distancing and sanitation protocols; staying current on Health Orders, and apprised of CDC, State and County guidelines; IIPP/CAL/OSHA standards as it relates to COVID training and steps to take when an employee shows signs of COVID symptoms. Now is the time to evaluate and reassess your business as it relates to compliance, up to date measures and continued education.
At SDHRC, we are here to help you navigate through these murky waters and lessen some of the hurdles you face as the reopening of California continues to fluctuate. As the uncertainties of your unique business continue to mount and the impact of COVID continues to be profound, let us execute a plan of action that will help ease your mind during these trying times.
Contact us today for a risk-free consultation.
About the Author
Marsi Harris, “Madre of HR”
Marsi is an HR Consultant who has been with SDHRC for over 2 years but has over 17 years of experience in talent management, organizational development, compensation analysis, and HR compliance. In the free time that Marsi does have, she enjoys traveling and enjoying time with her family.