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Salons, barber shops, gyms to remain closed as state begins to reopen

Posted at 12:53 PM, May 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-03 12:53:02-04

Schools, bars, gyms, hair salons, nursing home and long-term care facilities will remain closed until further notice.

On Saturday, Governor Ron DeSantis hosted a community roundtable discussion at the OhSoooJazzy Hair Salon in Orlando to hear concerns and suggestions about best practices moving forward.

The meeting included Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and salon owners from Orlando who shared their recommendations to safely reopen hair salons, barber shops and nail salons in Florida.

"If you make things that are low risk, people have the right to apply their trade and make a living," said Gov. DeSantis.

The group shared a few suggestions about managing their business and implementing new protocols to address the CDC’s recommendations about social distancing and face coverings.

John Henry, owner of J. Henry's Barber Shop in Orlando was part of the discussion and addressed the regulations that salons and barber shops already abide by to maintain a license to operate in the state of Florida.

"We all in this profession have been trained from day one, that we’ve got to be clean,” said Henry. “We make sure we take care of ourselves, our co-workers and our clients. Inspectors come into barber shops and hair salons all the time. We’re used to this kind of stuff," said Henry.

Last Wednesday, Governor DeSantis announced Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties are excluded from Florida’s initial plan to reopen "for the time being" because of the high number of coronavirus cases reported in South Florida.

Mayleen Sepulveda, owner of Oasis Salon & Spa in West Palm Beach understands the restriction are in place to ensure her customers are safe.

Her salon limited its hours of operation ahead of the mandated stay-at-home order to keep her customers safe.

“We need to respect the guidelines,” Sepulveda said. “Every day I pray that it’s a new day and that we will come back soon.”

However, she says navigating the financial burden after nearly eight weeks of closure has made it difficult to cover her costs.

“Thank God for the help the government is doing. Maybe we can survive,” Sepulveda said.

Even though Oasis Salon & Spa is not serving customers at this time, Sepulveda continues to clean her salon regularly.

Sepulveda also said the state inspects her salon annually, but her daily sanitation practices exceed state requirements to ensure the salon’s staff and clients are as safe as possible.

After ten years in business, Sepulveda continues to credit her salons success to excellent customer service and the strong relationships she has established with clients.

“I miss my customers. We try to be in touch with them and see how they’re doing because they’re family to us,” said Sepulveda.