For general workplace guidelines, please refer to COVID-19 Workplace Information. All businesses operating in Saskatchewan must be in compliance with these guidelines. The information below provides specific information for operators of workplaces offering food and accommodation services.
Restaurants, bars/nightclubs, lounges, food courts, cafeterias, cafes, bistros and similar facilities are allowed to re-open in Phase 3 at up to 50 per cent of regular capacity. The reduced seating capacity is intended to limit the size of gatherings and promote physical distancing. These guidelines apply to indoor and outdoor seating areas. In addition to these guidelines, all other applicable provincial regulations and standards must be followed.
Guidelines for General Operation
- Seating must be limited to 50 per cent of maximum capacity and set up in a way to maintain two metres of physical distancing between dining parties.
- Physical barriers should be installed where tables cannot be adequately separated. For example, raised barriers should be installed between adjoining booths.
- Only members of the same dining party should be seated together. A maximum of six people can be seated together at the same table. Larger groups will have to occupy more than one table, while maintaining physical distancing between tables.
- Aisles should be wide enough to allow room for people to maintain physical distancing. Consider using one-way traffic flow to help maintain distancing.
- Operators must promote physical distancing wherever possible – for customers and staff – including waiting areas, bar seating, food pick-up areas and payment lines.
- Use physical line controls when possible, such as crowd control cordons at entrances and pick-up lines. Place markers (e.g. tape or cones) every two metres as visible cues to support physical distancing.
- Consider modifying or eliminating in-person meetings and shift huddles.
- Consider having customers seat themselves by displaying table numbers. The host/hostess should maintain two metres of separation or stand behind a barrier to assign tables.
Guidelines for Employees
Whenever possible, staff should maintain two metres of separation from other staff and customers. However, physical distancing in certain work environments may be difficult, such as kitchens. If staff are unable to maintain two metres away from coworkers, other actions may be necessary, including self-monitoring of personal health, supervision by Infection Prevention and Control or Occupational Health and Safety staff in the workplace or implementing measures such as:
- Staggering activities to limit the number of staff in a confined area during the same period.
- Moving activities to another room whenever possible. For example, separating duties into unused dining areas may be an option for preparation and packaging.
- Altering shift and break times to minimize the number of staff working in close quarters.
- Using markings or dividers in the kitchen to ensure physical distancing.
- Considering directional arrows on the floor in the kitchen to control the flow of traffic, and clearly mark exit and entrance doors from the kitchen to service areas.
- Wearing personal protective equipment.
Proper and frequent hand hygiene by staff is a vital component in preventing the transmission of illnesses. Ensure staff are practicing proper hand hygiene and coughing/sneezing etiquette, including:
- Washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Using hand sanitizer only when appropriate in a food service situation.
- Only using hand sanitizer approved by Health Canada (DIN or NPN number).
- Avoiding touching their faces, mouths, noses and eyes.
- Coughing or sneezing into a tissue, then immediately disposing of the tissue and washing hands. If a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into the elbow – not the hands.
- Servers, hosts and other staff not able to maintain two metres of distance from customers must wear a procedural/surgical mask.
- Glove use is not required nor recommended. If staff are using gloves, they should be changed after every interaction, as well as when changing tasks. Hand hygiene must be performed between every glove change (hand washing with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer approved by Health Canada – DIN or NPN number).
- All workers, especially those in constant contact with the public, should self-monitor for symptoms and use the self-assessment tool available at saskatchewan.ca/COVID19.
- It is recommended that facilities review their employee illness policies to ensure staff are able to remain home when ill (as is required). Facilities are encouraged to have plans in place for increased worker absences due to illness or isolation.
- Workplaces should have a workplace illness policy. If policies do not exist or are not in line with COVID-19 recommendations, workplaces should ensure that all sick employees must stay home or be sent home from work.
- If employees go home sick, their work areas and any areas they had contact with must be cleaned and disinfected.
Cleaning and Sanitation Guidelines
- The COVID-19 virus can survive for several days on different surfaces and objects. Frequent cleaning and disinfection is important to prevent the spread of the disease.
- Maintain a cleaning schedule and ensure staff are adequately assigned and trained for additional cleaning, sanitizing and disinfection duties to help reduce transmission of COVID-19.
- Place an alcohol-based hand sanitizer of at least 70 per cent alcohol that is approved by Health Canada (DIN or NPN number) in dispensers or soap and water hand washing stations near doors, pay stations, washrooms and other high-touch locations for customers.
- Customers should be encouraged to wash or sanitize their hands prior to and following eating.
- Increase cleaning and disinfection of commonly contacted areas, including doorknobs, handles, counters, chairs, payment machine terminals and/or self-pay stations, and light switches. Common touch areas include those accessed by customers and employees.
- Ensure the disinfectant used in the facility is adequate for the elimination of viruses and approved by Health Canada (DIN).
- Thoroughly clean and sanitize tables after each customer. Tablecloths must be removed and discarded or laundered between customers. Any food contact surfaces must be sanitized as per the Provincial Public Eating Establishment Standards (100 ppm bleach, 200 ppm QUAT) or immediately rinsed following disinfection.
- Remove common touch items from tables, including condiments, salt, pepper, napkin holders, menus and special displays/decor.
- Menus must be cleaned and disinfected between each customer. If menus cannot be cleaned and sanitized (e.g. paper menus) they must be discarded after use. Where possible, consider using alternative menus instead of traditional menus, such as digital menu boards, online menus, large chalkboards or online pre-ordering.
- Ensure employee and public washrooms are cleaned and disinfected with increased frequency, are always well stocked with liquid soap and paper towels, and that warm running water is available. Garbage bins should be emptied frequently.
Food and Beverage Service Guidelines
- Consider call ahead or reservations only to help manage numbers. Rearrange waiting areas to ensure physical distancing can be maintained. Post signs indicating waiting protocols and best practices.
- Provide clear signage and markings for take-out vs. dine-in services.
- Use markings or one-way traffic flow within the restaurant, where possible.
- Recreation areas within restaurants and licensed establishments are not allowed to open. This includes play areas, dance floors, VLTs, electronic games (e.g. pinball), dart boards, pool tables, karaoke and other recreation areas.
- Live entertainment is not permitted at this time, but will be considered in future phases.
- Develop measures for servers to limit contact with customers, including:
- Having guests pour their own beverages (e.g. providing water, coffee or other beverages at the table) or have staff pre-pour beverages before delivering them to the table;
- Removing one chair per table and use that space as a designated place for the server to stand at the table, similar to the open end of a booth;
- Leaving food and drinks at the front of the table;
- Avoiding touching cups and glasses for refills; and,
- Providing packaging for customers to pack their own unfinished food items.
- Monitor the number of customers entering and exiting the establishment. Once the maximum number is reached, allow one person to enter for every person who leaves.
- Buffets and self-serve food lines remain closed at this time. Do not provide open self-serve food to customers (including refill stations, condiment stations, etc.). Pre-packaged foods are acceptable, but must be handled by employees only.
- Cafeteria-style food facilities, where staff serve to customers, are allowed. Food must be protected from customer contact and cross-contamination.
- If a bar or food preparation area is open to seating, seating areas or any public area, utensils, garnishes, glassware, etc. must be two metres away from members of the public or protected from cross-contamination.
- Customers can sit at bar areas, as long as physical distancing is maintained between groups and between individual customers. Staff should maintain physical distancing whenever possible and wear a surgical/procedure mask when that is not possible. All items behind the bar (e.g. glassware, dishware, garnishes) must be protected from exposure to customers and cross-contamination. Physical barriers may be an appropriate measure.
- There should be no movement of customers between bars and eating areas.
- Where possible, continue to offer and encourage online or telephone orders with delivery, drive-through or pick-up services.
- Where possible, use rolled silverware. Do not pre-set tables. Staff should hand out tableware or utensils to customers.
- Provide clean bags for take-out foods. Customers should be encouraged not to use their own containers, reusable bags or boxes for take-out orders.
- Post signs indicating that no customer items (e.g. wallet, purse, jacket) are to be placed on take-out or payment counters.
- Customers who are sick or on self-isolation must not be admitted.
For additional information, please call the Business Response Team at 1-844-800-8688 or email email@example.com.