Advisory Committee holds virtual meeting to discuss how to safely reopen CT businesses next week


HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)– As Covid-19 hospitalizations decline, businesses are gearing up to reopen next Wednesday. The Advisory Committee consulting with Governor Ned Lamont on how to reopen safely held a virtual meeting Thursday.

While some businesses can reopen next week, they don’t have to if they don’t feel safe.

With Phase One of Governor Lamont’s ‘Reopen Connecticut’ less than a week away, the 4-week-old committee who is tasked with advising the governor on next steps met virtually Thursday to discuss where they’re at.

Related: Gov. Lamont wants to be ‘cautious’ with indoor dining; says early June may be too soon

“Employees have questions about safety. Is it safe for me to be back there? Owners have questions, as well. Even if we have limited capacity, is that going to be enough for me to even open the doors? And that’s a decision that each business has to make,” said Garrett Sheehan, President and CEO of the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce.

Phase One reopening on May 20 will be far from the norm. Masks will be required, no groups of five or more will be allowed. And people 65 and older are encouraged to stay home. Also, businesses will be required to do frequent cleaning.

“I do find that the supply chain is loosening up and there are masks coming in from China. So we are getting statements from, you know the Purells of the world, that they will be providing more to the healthcare community,” said Meredith Reuben, CEO of EBP Supply Solutions.

The State Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) recently laid out guidelines for businesses to be Covid compliant. A checklist to help consumers and businesses alike feel like they’re doing all they can to stay safe amid the pandemic.

“You are given a badge that essentially gives the sign of approval from Connecticut that you’re Covid compliant and you can use that in your small business, on your website. You can put the sticker on your storefront,” said Glendowlyn Thames, Deputy Commissioner, Department of Economic and Community Development.

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