What to Expect When Miami Reopens

It’s Not “Business as Usual” Quite Yet

Cities within Miami-Dade County have slowly re-opened their doors, but strict rules apply in order to enforce safety while getting started with the “new normal.” Speaking of which, Miami-Dade County announced its Phase 1 plan on Monday, May 18th, which allows non-essential businesses to reopen under certain regulations under its New Normal Guide.

Phase 1A of the City of Miami’s reactivation plan began on Wednesday, May 20th, which is the city’s first step back into normalcy. This phase allows for select businesses to reopen. However, there are various restrictions that you must still abide by in order to comply with the city’s Stand Up, Miami reopening plan. If not, you risk being punished with a Code Compliance Violation, as well as facing many irritated civilians.

COVID-19 Rules for Miami-Dade County & City of Miami Businesses

As exciting as it is to know that many businesses are reopening, and life is creeping closer to what it was before COVID-19, there are many rules you must follow to maintain public safety. I strongly advise you to comply with such regulations, as doing so will make it easier for businesses to remain open and not have to suffer another mandated city-wide closure.

Miami-Dade County Rules of Conduct

The following gives a brief, uncomprehensive outline of Miami-Dade County’s reopening plan, including what you can and cannot do during such phases.

Restaurants:

  • Must have self-dispensing hand sanitizer or handwashing station at the entrance to the restaurant
  • Health and safety signage/visual aids must be posted for customers and staff
  • Must put e a disposal plan in place for safe handling and dispensing of used PPEs in restaurants and relevant exterior areas
  • Must introduce plexiglass barriers at tills and counters
  • Customers must wear masks at all times unless seated at a table; any employees approaching tables must wear masks
  • Gloves must be worn by bussers and food runners; any other staff not wearing gloves that places or removes food or objects from a table while patrons are sitting at the table must wash their hands before, after, and between each physical encounter with a guest table
  • The server must maintain maximum social distance feasible
  • Any indoor restaurant operation must be limited by the Governor's Executive Order but no more than 50% of its building occupancy with the maintenance of social distancing of 6 feet between parties:
    • To estimate the occupancy of a space, divide the square footage of the room by the square footage required per person (or per group of guests who live in the same household)
  • A per table party limit of four persons must be maintained whether seating is indoors or outdoors unless the members of the party are from the same household

Retail:

  • Enable a single point of entrance
  • Facial coverings must be worn inside a retail establishment
  • Install hand sanitizing dispensers or make sanitizer available at entrances and in common areas
  • Merchandise, particularly clothing, must not be handled or tried on by customers and returned to shelves or display racks before being held for 24 hours or properly sanitized
  • Cart and basket handles must be sanitized between uses
  • Limit the number of staff and customers to state requirement up to a maximum of 50% of mall/store occupancy
  • Place signs outside and inside the elevators to limit capacity to four passengers, with visual markers for passengers to stand on
  • Mark with arrows entry and exit points, creating one-way circulation paths inside stores
  • Train all personnel in new operating protocols and modifications to existing codes of conduct to deal with COVID-19 issues
  • Post CDC signage in publicly trafficked locations emphasizing measures to "Stop the Spread of Germs" (CDC) and exercise social responsibility (e.g., hygiene)

Arts & Culture:

  • Install hand sanitizing stations at entrances and in common areas
  • Space out customer queues venue entry and at ticketing booths with floor markers (every six feet); adopt virtual waiting area/queue where feasible
  • Procure appropriate amounts of soap, hand sanitizer, cleaning materials and protection equipment (masks, gloves)
  • Place signs outside and inside the elevators to limit capacity to four passengers, with visual markers for passengers to stand on.
  • Suspend group tours and group programming; implement circulation control measures to support social distancing
  • Eliminate the use of interactive exhibits
  • Mark with arrows entry and exit points, creating one-way circulation paths inside the venue when possible; otherwise, enforce distancing by posting signs indicating six feet of separation
  • Flush plumbing and run water in sinks to eliminate stagnant water from the period of facility closure
  • Train all personnel in new operating protocols and modifications to existing codes of conduct to deal with COVID-19 issues
  • Post CDC signage in publicly trafficked locations emphasizing measures to "Stop the Spread of Germs" (CDC) and exercise social responsibility (e.g., hygiene)

Warehousing/Trade and logistics:

  • Install hand sanitizing dispensers or make sanitizer available at entrances and in common areas
  • Perform deep disinfection of stored goods between shifts
  • Acquire uniforms to supply employees with enough uniforms to be able to wear a clean uniform each shift
  • Install barriers between all workstations
  • Ensure enough masks available for all employees that are in contact with other people, as well as sufficient quantities of soap, hand sanitizer, gloves as necessary
  • Wash hands or use hand sanitizer between deliveries
  • Clean and disinfect multi-touch equipment like handgrips carts, steering wheels, pallet trucks, etc. every time a user changes and after each shift

Manufacturing:

  • Procure increased amounts of soap, hand sanitizer, cleaning materials and equipment
  • Post promotional signage around handwashing and other best healthy hygiene practices
  • Reduce seating in breakroom/common areas to ensure a minimum of six feet of physical distance
  • Mark common areas with physical markers to reinforce compliance with measures (e.g., six feet of separation in queues)
  • Place signs outside and inside the elevators to limit the number of people within the elevator (one person per at a time or at 50% capacity

Personal grooming:

  • Capacity limited to 10 individuals or 25% of building occupancy as required by law, whichever is smaller at any one time
  • Only the customers receiving the service may enter the shop (except for a parent or guardian accompanying a minor)
  • All services require an appointment; appointments must be recorded for tracking purposes and for the notification of others that may have been present in the shop if a positive COVID-19 case is reported
  • Customers to wear face masks (coverings may be removed for a short time when necessary to perform face services as instructed by groomer/stylist)
  • Employees to wear masks and gloves at all times, the use of face shields is strongly encouraged
  • Hairdressers have to wear single-use aprons
  • Any face to face service requires a face shield being worn by the groomer/ stylist (e.g., beard/mustache, eyelashes, eyebrow, facial)
  • All staff must wash hands before and after each service; if possible, it is recommended to wash hands in front of the customer

Offices & shopping centers

  • All visitors and tenants must sanitize hands at the time of building entry and wear facial coverings while in the building
  • Offices with cubicles or open space designs must establish the minimum six feet of social distancing required, or install physical barriers between workstations to ensure distancing
  • Procure increased amounts of soap, hand sanitizer, cleaning materials and equipment
  • Install CDC signage located at the entry, lobby/waiting area, elevators, escalators, restrooms, tenant entrances mandating social distancing and proper handwashing/sanitizing, over-communicate the protocols throughout the building common areas
  • All building tenants and visitors must wear facial coverings while in the building
  • Limit the use of common conference rooms, lunchrooms, and other common areas or schedule use to reduce gathering of large numbers of tenants or visitors

City of Miami Rules of Conduct

The following gives a brief, uncomprehensive outline of the City of Miami’s reopening plan, including what you can and cannot do during such phases.

Restaurants: As of now, all restaurants are permitted to open for take-out and delivery only. Dine-in is permitted in phase 1B, which begins Wednesday, May 27th.

  • Must wear a face mask unless you’re seated at a table
  • No more than 4 people at a table
    • A party of 6 is only allowed if it’s one family from the same household
  • Must wear a face mask when you leave the table to go to the restroom

Retailers: Nail and hair salons are exempt until further notice.

  • Facial coverings must be worn at all times while in retail establishments
  • Hand sanitizing dispensers or individual sanitizers shall be available at entrances and in common areas
  • Fitting rooms shall remain closed
  • Occupancy load shall be limited to 50% of mall/store occupancy (i.e. square footage of store divided by 60)
  • Merchandise, particularly clothing, must be cleaned prior to being handled by customers and returned to shelves or display racks

Parks:

  • You may go to parks individually or with members of your household only
  • Facemasks are required at all times, unless under age 2 or doing vigorous exercise like running
  • Social distancing is required at all times, except for household groups visiting the park together
  • Parks are open for passive and leisure use only: walking, jogging, cycling, roller skating, singles tennis and solo racquetball
  • Organized sports, pickup games, birthday parties, barbeques, picnics and gatherings and training sessions are strictly prohibited
  • Playgrounds, fitness zones, dog parks, pools, picnic shelters, basketball and volleyball courts, and sports fields remain CLOSED

Personal grooming:

  • All services are by appointment only; absolutely no walk-ups permitted
  • Employees must wear a facemask and gloves at all times
  • Customers must wait outside of the store until called inside for their appointment
  • Customers must wear a facemask inside the store, which may only be removed when necessary to receive services
  • Only customers receiving service may enter the store (parent/guardian may accompany minors receiving service)

Office spaces:

  • All visitors and tenants must sanitize hands at time of building entry and wear facial coverings while in the building
  • Ensure there is a single point of entrance (exits shall not be locked or obstructed)
  • Offices with cubicles or open space designs shall establish the minimum 6 feet of social distancing required; or install physical barriers between workstations (e.g., plexiglass partitions) to ensure distancing
  • Signs shall be placed outside and inside elevators and other common areas (e.g., restrooms, breakrooms) to summarize key safety messages
  • Use of common conference rooms, lunchrooms and other common areas shall be limited to reduce the gathering of large numbers of tenants or visitors

What to Expect in the Future

This is a wonderful time for businesses and patrons to slowly get back to normal in the City of Miami and Miami-Dade County. However, these actions are the first of several steps needed to fully get these areas back on their feet. For the City of Miami, phase 1B commences on Wednesday, May 27th, and details will follow regarding what will and will not be allowed during this phase. For Miami-Dade County,

I am just as eager for this slow reopening as you probably are, but it’s important to remember that safety comes first. If residents don’t comply with these rules, we may have a long road ahead of us than anticipated. Let’s work together to enjoy the reopening of the City of Miami and Miami-Dade County safely and efficiently.

I am a skilled former prosecutor who obtains 30+ years of experience handling criminal cases. Contact Jonathan Blecher, P.A. for a free initial consultation at 305-330-1976 now!