Mass Restaurant Assc. COVID Update for June 29, 2020

June 29, 2020
Massachusetts Restaurant Association

Headlines across the country are not encouraging, but Massachusetts' public heath data continues to trend in the right direction.

Today New Jersey delayed indoor dining; New York City considering similar delay; Florida and Texas restrict on-premises alcohol service. 
These are all headlines that have been happening over the last 72 hours. Currently, Massachusetts public health data continues to trend in the right direction. In order for us to keep moving forward, we have to ensure that we continue to follow the guidelines.

This includes:
  • requiring employees who do not feel well to stay home
  • ensuring customers are wearing masks at all times when not sitting at the table
  • following the 6-foot table social distance requirements
  • discouraging groups of people from congregating
Together, we can show the rest of the country that Massachusetts is the leader for the hospitality industry.
MRA Common Question

Does the three hour pay requirement apply for a meeting that is only scheduled for one hour?
A). If an employer schedules an employee to work a shift of three (3) or more hours, the employee arrives as scheduled and the employer sends him/her home or, otherwise, does not provide the scheduled hours, the employee must be paid for at least three (3) hours. The rate of pay is the employee’s regular rate of pay for any part of the three (3) hours in which the employee actually worked and at least minimum wage for the balance of the three (3) hours.
If an employee is scheduled to work a shift of less than three (3) hours, the employer must pay the employee for only the hours actually worked. For example, if an employee is scheduled to work a two (2) hour shift, the “three (3) hour” rule does not apply and the employer must pay the employee for only the hours actually worked.
Operational Guidance

14 Quick Tips for Better Restaurant Hygiene

Restaurant Business offers advice on how to choose hand sanitizers and soaps, how to use gloves, and hand washing and drying do’s and don’ts (e.g., avoid blow dryers). Hand hygiene, along with face covering and social distancing, are among the most effective means to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus. These tips come from Tork’s senior scientist and brand innovation manager Carolyn Berland and are worth sharing.
Read all 14 tips
The Restaurant Law Center has created the attached document which outlines what operators should do in the event of an employee testing positive for Covid-19.  The document addresses the question of what to do if an employee is sick as well as what to do for employees who were exposed but are asymptomatic. This document provides the relevant links from the CDC, EEOC, or OSHA for additional guidance.
To see full document click here