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Salon owner fears reopening without proper PPE

2 months 1 week 2 days ago Monday, April 27 2020 Apr 27, 2020 April 27, 2020 6:25 PM April 27, 2020 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Businesses won't be reopening until the governor feels Louisiana meets the criteria to move onto phase 1, and that could be after May 15. If that's the case, a salon owner in Baton Rouge says she's requesting information about where to get the proper protection to protect her and her clients.

For the last few weeks, Chelsea Leonard has been staying home, away from the salon where she works. She and her mom own Just Teased the Salon on Jones Creek Road. As the time approaches for them to possibly reopen to take clients, her questions remain unanswered.

"Our biggest concerns are not being able to purchase the things that we need," she said.

Leonard says the Louisiana Board of Cosmetology put out some guidelines recently that include screening employees and clients for a temperature, cleaning, and wiping down all items after each client, requiring everyone to wear a mask and disposable capes throughout the visit and permitting only five people per 500 square feet. Leonard says many of the supplies she needs to follow those guidelines are not accessible.

"I looked up the contact-less thermometer, those wouldn't be available to get here until June 15 through July 7," she said.

"Part of me is like, 'is it really safe?'"

State Board of Cosmetology Director Steve Young says guidelines for reopening salons will be put in place by the Louisiana Department of Health. In Louisiana, there are 4,500 salons and 35,000 people who work in salons waiting to go back to work.

While she struggles to find the supplies she needs, Leonard fears the risk of not reopening when everyone else does could hurt business. She fears if she doesn't open she might lose customers.

Leonard says they'll reopen when she feels safe to do so and is collecting the few supplies that she has, bracing for the changes in her industry.

At Monday's news conference, the governor said businesses should prepare and start looking for the supplies they need to reopen now.

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