The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way that Baltimore residents live their lives. To prevent the spread of the virus, the state of Maryland and the city of Baltimore have set guidelines. The key to keeping the citizens of Baltimore safe is not just to understand the guidelines, but to follow them.
What Is Baltimore’s Reopening Plan?
Currently, Baltimore is in stage three of its recovery plan. There are no set plans to reopen more at the moment. The County Executive, Johnny Olszewski, and the County’s leadership team are continuing to follow the situation and will move on to additional reopening when it is deemed safe and the spread of the virus has slowed down.
Is it Mandatory to Wear a Mask in Baltimore During COVID-19 Pandemic?
In Baltimore, everyone five years of age and older must wear masks in any establishment that serves the public. Masks are not necessary outdoors unless it is impossible to stay at least six feet away from other people.
What Businesses and Services Are Open in Baltimore?
Now that Baltimore is in stage three, all businesses and services are open, but there are restrictions. Business owners and customers must follow the set guidelines based on the type of business. While some businesses have stricter guidelines than others, all businesses must require customers to wear masks and socially distance themselves.
Are Restaurants Open?
Restaurants in Baltimore are now open for indoor and outdoor dining in addition to pick-up, delivery, or curbside delivery of food and alcohol. Restaurants can fill to 75% of the building’s maximum capacity. Also, face masks must be worn unless customers are sitting at the table, eating, or drinking. Finally, restaurant owners must clean and sanitize the building on a consistent basis.
Are Gyms Open?
Yes, gyms are open; however, members and employees must follow the guidelines:
- Members and employees must always wear face masks, regardless of activity.
- Machines must be placed at least six feet apart.
- Members and employees must maintain social distance.
- All machines should be sanitized before and after each use.
- Signs and floor marking should be added to remind members and employees to social distance.
What Does Baltimore Define as an “Essential Business”?
When the pandemic began, several businesses were deemed essential, which means that they have been permitted to remain open. These included:
- Healthcare centers (hospitals, walk-in clinics, urgent care, etc.)
- Grocery stores
- Food delivery services
- Farmer’s markets
- Convenience stores
- Liquor stores
- Pet supply stores
- Restaurants for only carry-out, delivery, or drive-thru service
Are Large Gatherings Allowed in Baltimore?
Yes, large gatherings are allowed; however, there are restrictions. Indoor events at a public place are limited to 25% occupancy. Outdoor gatherings require there be room for everyone to stay at least 6 feet apart.
How to Keep Your Business Open Amidst COVID
If a business closes during the pandemic, there is a good chance that there will not be enough money and resources to reopen. This is why it is so important for business owners to follow the necessary guidelines to keep their business from closing. These include:
- Require that face masks are worn at all times
- Require customers and employees to social distance.
- Hang signs reminding customers of the guidelines.
- Place stickers on the floor to help customers properly social distance.
- Have the building cleaned and sterilized regularly either by staff or by hiring a professional disinfecting and sanitizing company to do so on a weekly basis.