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Visiting the barber or hair salon this week? Remember, it's up to you to avoid contracting COVID-19


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Mike Osborne)  --  Tennessee will allow barber shops and hair salons to open on Wednesday in most of its 95 counties, but don't expect the state to protect you from coronavirus exposure.

Gov. Bill Lee announced last week that he will permit several types of so-called “close contact” businesses to open this week. The Lee Administration has issued a set of guidelines meant to reduce the threat of virus transmission at hair salons, barber shops and other businesses that require staff to physically touch the customer.

However, Gov. Lee has made it clear that his guidelines will not be enforced by the state. So how will customers know if businesses they patronize are operating according to state guidelines? Here are just a few of the signs that may suggest your barber or hairstylist is abiding by the state directives:

  • You are required to make an appointment to receive service.
  • You are asked coronavirus screening questions as you enter the business.
  • Staff members are all wearing masks.
  • Occupancy inside the business has been reduced by at least half.
  • Staff and customers are not permitted to “cluster” around cash registers or other locations in the store.
  • Staff are sanitizing their hands and their work stations between each customer.
  • The waiting area has been closed and all books, magazines and other shared items have been removed.
  • Doors and windows remain open whenever possible
  • Hand-sanitizer dispensers are readily available

Shelter-at-home orders remain in full force in Nashville through at least May 8. Memphis on Monday released its own close-contact guidelines, but will be enforcing the restrictions.
You can find a complete list of Tennessee's “close contact” business guidelines here.

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