COLUMBIA, SC (WBTW) – Gov. Henry McMaster lifted restrictions on close-contact services and recreational and athletic activities effective May 18.
This includes barbershops, hair salons, nail sons, spas, tattoo services, tanning, massage, gyms, fitness and exercise centers, commercial gyms, and public or commercial pools as well as many other businesses.
Commercial gyms will include group exercise facilities such as yoga studios, barre classes, and others.
“With our increased capacity for testing the people of our state, it is time to responsibly and gradually get these small businesses back up and running,” said McMaster. “We have an opportunity to set an example for the rest of the world by reinvigorating our economy while staying safe, but we can only do that if South Carolinians continue to follow the advice and recommendations of our public health experts.”
The governor’s announcement comes following nearly three weeks of accelerateSC meetings, in part, for the purpose of developing guidelines for operations that each of these businesses are expected to follow, if and when they choose to open.
- General guidelines for close contact service providers
- Specific guidelines for cosmetology establishments, gyms and fitness centers
- Public or commercial pools
Most of the guidelines include the following:
- Guidance on social distancing within businesses, including recommended capacity requirements.
- Additional cleaning and sanitizing guidelines for equipment, tables, chairs, etc.
- Additional guidance on health checks for employees.
- Additional guidance on training for employees.
McMaster said the first group of state employees will begin returning to offices once ther is ample PPE on site, no later than June 1. They can start as soon as equipment is there, McMaster said.