Use this information to protect your business and employees. Stay alert to the cleanliness of your stores and the health/needs of your employees by following the suggestions below.

Prepare

Implement strategies to protect your staff from COVID-19. During a COVID-19 outbreak, all sick employees should stay home and away from the workplace, respiratory etiquette and hand washing should be encouraged and routine cleaning of commonly touched surfaces should be performed regularly.

Have a plan to deal with high levels of employee absenteeism and how it will impact your business operations. The CDC recommends taking time, for example, to cross-train staff and identify top business priorities if you have less staff.

Review your sick leave policies to ensure they are flexible and consistent with public health guidance and that employees are aware of these policies. If necessary, consider implementing an emergency sick leave policy. For on Paid Sick Leave and FMLA, reference our Government-Issued Guidance or visit the Department of Labor's workplace guidance.

To learn more about COVID-19, visit the CDC's information page here.

Stay Informed and Communicate


For You and Your Staff

Keep updated on the latest developments around the outbreak by visiting your state and local health departments, the National Retail Federation’s Coronavirus Resources for Retailers here and the CDC’s website here.

If you haven’t done so already, communicate health policies and procedures around COVID-19 to your staff. Jewelers of America has provided a sample letter that retailers can use, outlining common sense recommendations such as staying home when sick and properly washing hands on a regular basis.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has developed materials for employers and recommends, among other things, creating an employee communications plan to share the latest information on the coronavirus with employees and business partners. You can get more detailed guidance here.


For Your Customers

Send a message to your customers to communicate transparency and compassion. Promote what you are doing within your business to keep you, your employees and your customers safe. Be sure to include how you are cleaning your stores. Jewelers of America has provided a sample letter to customers, describing to them the steps and procedures you should be implementing.

Make products like hand sanitizer available to customers and employees. Be ready to respond if customers need information and want to be reassured that sick employees are staying home.

Consider alternative ways to conduct business:

  • Set appointment times so customers can work with a sales association one-on-one.
  • Virtual visits – Set times to speak with customers via FaceTime or other virtual mediums.
  • Promote your e-commerce platforms for those who are wanting to shop from their own homes.


If Employees Become Sick

Separate sick employees: CDC recommends that employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately.

Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.

If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Employees exposed to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.

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