Jack Bell, left, Bill Grant and Gerry Chapman await getting hair cuts at the barber shop on Third Avenue North Thursday morning as the province enters into phase two of its re-opening plan. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Lineup greets barber shop as businesses return under COVID-19 rules

Chairs are placed inside and outside at appropriate physical distance

Many folks have missed being able to get a hair cut during the COVID-19 pandemic.

So when the province of B.C. allowed for barber shops and beauty salons to re-open this week under strict new guidelines, many people in Williams Lake began making appointments and shops have been busy.

Sitting physically distanced on folding chairs outside the barber shop on Third Avenue North Thursday morning, three men were waiting for their turn.

Inside two men were getting hair cuts and two more sat across either side of the room, also waiting to get a hair cut.

Outside the shop, Jack Bell said his last hair cut was in January, and joked about being able to put his hair into a pony tail.

Bill Grant’s last appointment was in February, and Gerry Chapman’s was in January.

A block away inside a salon, the woman at the front counter said it will be interesting to adapt to the new procedures.

It will be all new, she quipped, adding she knows she isn’t alone.

Some barbers and hairstylists in the Lower Mainland have petitioned not to be in the first phase of B.C.’s economic opening, but in Williams Lake many are re-opening this week.

Read more: Barbers, hairstylists start petition to not be in first phase of B.C. economic reopening

B.C.’s public health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, however, said the openings would not be without basic principles of health orders.

“Individual plans for every business that will be opened do not need to be submitted for approval,” Henry said. “But you do need to ensure that your plan is publicly posted. This is how we have accountability to each other, and how we can ensure that everybody understands the measures you’re taking to keep your employees and to keep customers safe.”

Read more: COVID-19: Business return up to managers, customers, Dr. Henry says

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