Beginning tomorrow, Monday, May 18, the City of St. Louis will officially enter phase one of the STL Regional Business Recovery Initiative. Businesses that were previously closed under COVID-19 “Stay at Home” orders will be permitted to safely and responsibly reopen if they so choose.
“What we’re doing here is cracking the door open just a little bit. We’re not swinging the door all the way back open. We continue to see downward trends in hospitalizations and so we’re working with our health department and the St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force to begin a phased approach toward slowly restarting. This, by no means, is permission to party or cause for celebration. COVID-19 is still a serious virus and ought to be treated as such,” said Mayor Lyda Krewson.
Businesses that decide to reopen and allow employees to return to work need to follow the “Phase I Reopening Standards and Guidance”, which contains industry-specific recommendations and requirements that promote social distancing, good hygiene, and other evidence-based practices.
That information and more can be found on the City’s website here:
In preparation for the gradual easing of COVID-19-related restrictions, the City has moved swiftly to provide approximately 75,000 surgical masks and hundreds of gallons of hand sanitizer to high-risk populations, including seniors, people with disabilities, long-term nursing care facilities, and individuals with HIV/AIDS. The City is also providing free packets of masks and gloves to more than 1,100 small businesses and sole proprietors.
“It’s important for us to be there for these vulnerable populations and small businesses, who are counting on us now more than ever. By meeting this need and providing the personal protective equipment (PPE), they can protect themselves and those around them as we enter this next chapter. That makes us all safer,” Mayor Krewson added.
Any future phases of the STL Regional Business Recovery Initiative or modifications of existing guidance will be based upon available health data, experience, continued developments in testing and treatment, and ultimately, the availability of a vaccine.
The City remains committed to its ongoing response to COVID-19 and is taking strategic, proactive steps to continue conducting contact tracing and secure additional testing kits and supplies for expanded testing opportunities.
In the meantime, social gatherings and events with more than 10 people remain prohibited, large-scale venues and cultural institutions in the City remain closed, and the public is encouraged to continue practicing the following CDC-recommended preventive measures:
- Maintain a physical distance of at least 6 ft. from any non-related person
- Wear a mask or face covering when social distancing isn’t possible, in closed spaces, or onboard public transportation
- Wash your hands with soap and water several times a day and/or use a hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol
- Vulnerable populations, including those above 65 or with underlying medical/health conditions, should stay home as much as possible
- Sanitize commonly used surfaces in your home and workspace
- Monitor any signs of illness and stay some if you are sick
- Do not visit nursing homes, long-term care facilities, and/or retirement homes
Individuals and/or businesses with questions about phase one of the STL Regional Business Recovery Initiative can contact the City using this email address: RestartStLouis@stlouis-mo.gov.
Additionally, you can alert the City to violations of COVID-19-related orders by phone at (314) 622-4800 or online here:
Mayor Krewson will hold another digital community COVID-19 briefing on Facebook Live at 2 p.m. on Monday. You can watch and submit questions here: https://www.facebook.com/LydaSTL/