BREAKING: New Date to reopen Connecticut with Phase 2 on June 17, 2020


Phase 2 of reopening Connecticut in the wake of the coronavirus is still about a week and a half away, but things are still changing.

The Phase 2 date was moved up from Saturday, June 20 to Wednesday, June 17 to work around Father's Day weekend.

Gov. Ned Lamont made the announcement on Friday. Sunday, he released the new guidelines for things like indoor eating, a return to the gym, going to the movies, and outdoor events.

Here are the highlights:

  • Capacity is limited to 50 percent with social distancing for seating and gym equipment.
  • Strict cleaning and disinfection protocols in place.
  • If people can work from home, they should keep doing it.
  • People in high-risk groups should also continue to stay home.
  • Wear a face mask in public.
  • Social gatherings remain restricted.

Starting Monday, businesses and nonprofits need to go to the Connecticut self-certification website to certify they are compliant with the reopening rules ahead of the June 17 reopening.

Those rules include detailed information and requirements about physical distancing, capacity, hygiene, sanitizing, signage, personal protective equipment, and training, among other things.

For indoor dining, Connecticut restaurants will have to meet strict guidelines, including assigning a staff member to oversee training protocols, and all buffets and self-service stations will have to remain closed.

Other businesses that are included in Phase 2 are:

  • Amusement parks
  • Hotels
  • Indoor museums
  • Zoos
  • Aquariums
  • Bowling alleys
  • Movie theaters
  • Libraries
  • Tattoo parlors
  • Nail salons

Sports and fitness facilities, including gyms and pools, and outdoor events will also reopen on June 17.

However, just because these businesses are able to reopen does not mean they have will.

It can be a decision made by business owners based on their individual level of comfort or ability to conform to the new guidelines.

Phase 2 to Reopen CT New Date: June 17, 2020. The Governor and public health officials are monitoring test results for possible links to large demonstrations, but as long as COVID hospitalizations and infection rates remain low, look for Phase 2 on June 17!

"Our public health professionals are continuing to monitor test results for possible links to large demonstrations, but as long as COVID hospitalizations and infection rates remain low, we will be in a very good position for a June 17 Phase 2," Gov. Ned Lamont said on Friday.

Phase 2 includes indoor dining, gyms, nail salons, movies theaters, museums, amusement parks and more.

The state partially reopened on Wednesday, May 20. It was the first of three phases that were outlined by the governor and the Reopen CT Advisory Group.

With Phase 1 came outdoor dining, and the reopening of non-essential retail businesses, offices, outdoor museums and zoos, outdoor recreation.

Hair salons and barbershops reopened on June 1.

In mid-May, hospitalizations continued to trend in the downward direction, which was a major goal to be reached before the first phase.

Along with downed hospitalizations, the advisory group wanted the state to also:

• Achieve an increase in widespread and streamlined testing

• Establish sufficient capacity for contact tracing and isolation

• Implement a high touch program to protect persons and populations that are at higher risk for severe illness and death from COVID-19

• Ensure our hospitals are able to provide optimal standard of care to all patients, including those without COVID-19, as prior to the surge

• Guarantee appropriate PPE is available to everyone who needs it

• Implement protocols to ensure appropriate safeguards are in place for safe opening of each sector of our economy

For more on the guidelines and what businesses reopened,click here.

As Phase 1 got underway on May 20, Gov. Ned Lamont also outlined what will come with Phase 2, slated for June 20, however that could change depending on how the state meets required public health metrics.

See the latest coronavirus statistics here.

For Phase 2 to happen, five criteria must be met, which include: Declining transmission, with a less than 100-bed net increase in hospitalizations in the last week of Phase 1; testing and contact tracing, with 100,000 tests a week connected with less than 50% of identified contacts within 48 hours; business and social safeguards; protection for critical and at-risk individuals; healthcare capacity, with less than 20% of beds occupied by COVID-19 patients amongst total peak COVID-19 bed capacity.

The Phase 2 businesses that are expected to reopen on June 17 include:

• Hotels (no bar areas)

• Gyms, fitness, and sports clubs

• All personal services

• Outdoor arts, entertainment and events (up to 50 people)

• Outdoor amusement parts

• Movie theaters

• Bowling alleys

• Social clubs, pools

• All museums, zoo, aquariums

• Restaurants (indoor, no bar)

Also under Phase 2 are several education and community services, including:

• Selected youth sports (Jun 20)

• Public libraries (Jun 20)

• All summer day camps (Jun 22)

• Nonresidential workforce programs (mid Jun)

• Nonresidential clinical/laboratory courses (mid Jun)

• K- 12 summer school (July 6)

• Other nonresidential programs, community colleges (July/Aug)

• Graduate programs (July/Aug)

• Undergraduate residential small scale pilot programs (July/Aug)

During Phase 2, those who are at-risk and those who are 65 and older are encouraged to continue to stay home and stay safe.

Face masks/coverings will also be worn at all times during both Phase 2 and Phase 3, and social distancing would still be encouraged.

Phase 3 would happen four weeks after Phase 2, and would include the reopening of:

• Bars

• Indoor event spaces & venues

• Indoor amusement parks & arcades

The Reopen CT Advisory Group and Gov. Lamont said they will continue to monitor several risk factors as the state continues the phases, including a second surge of outbreak, testing statuses, contact tracing, PPE supplies, and more.

For a closer look at the complete reopening plan,click here.

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