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Mississippi governor approves reopening tattoo parlors with restrictions

On Friday, Gov. Tate Reeves announced the next step for Mississippi to continue reopening the state’s economy.

Reeves said he consulted with state health officials to build on the state’s measured, strategic plan to reopen the economy while protecting public health. In Friday’s executive order, Reeves laid out strict social distancing guidelines and sanitation protocols for tattoo parlors to begin reopening.

“Our safer-at-home order does not expire until May 25, but I don’t want to wait if there are things that we can safely do to allow people to return to work,” Reeves said. “To that end, I signed a new executive order today. It allows tattoo parlors to re-open with health guidelines that are very similar to those for salons and barbers. It is an effort to affirm that there is no such thing as a nonessential business to those workers who rely on its paycheck for food and shelter.”

Having worked closely with the Mississippi Gaming Commission on mapping out the reopening of casinos throughout the state, Reeves also announced that they have established a date of May 21 for them to safely reopen following strict guidelines for casino workers.

“I want to also update the people of Mississippi on another reopening,” Reeves said. “We’ve been working with the Mississippi Gaming Commission, and they have set a date and guidelines for casino workers to safely return to work. It won’t be at full capacity and there are social distancing rules in place. But it is a progress for an industry that employs thousands of Mississippians.”

Reeves announced his new executive order and casino reopenings at his daily press briefing today, which you can view on our Facebook page here.

The strict social distancing guidelines implemented under Executive Order No. 1486 to safely reopen tattoo parlors include:

For businesses:

Before they can reopen, the tattoo parlor must be deep-cleaned, disinfected, and sanitized top to bottom. After opening, tattoo parlors must be deep-cleaned daily.

All tattoo parlors are expected to take every step necessary to implement the regulations, orders, and guidance from the Mississippi State Department of Health and CDC to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Services are allowed only by appointment. No walk-in customers at this time.

Minimizing person-to-person contact through technology, like mobile or online reservations and contact-less payment, is encouraged.

Tattoo parlors must post signage at each entrance stating no customer with a fever or COVID-19 symptoms are allowed in.

Only one customer per employee is allowed in the tattoo parlor at any given time.

Tattooing and piercing around the mouth and nose are prohibited.

Chairs are to be rearranged to ensure at least 6 feet between each customer.

Chair and workstations must be sanitized after each use by a customer.

All high-touch areas must be sanitized at least once every two hours.

Hand sanitizer must be placed at all entrances.

For employees:

All employees will be screened daily at the beginning of their shifts, including asking whether they have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the past 14 days and have they had a fever in the last 48 hours.

All employees must be provided training on how to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Face coverings must be provided to all employees who come in direct contact with customers. Employees are encouraged to wear face shields while tattooing a customer.

Employees must also wear disposable gloves and change them between customers, as well as wash their hands between every customer.

For customers:

All waiting areas are to remain closed. Customers must wait in their vehicles until their appointment time and they are called for screening before entering.

Customers must sanitize their hands when entering and exiting.

All customers must be screened upon entry.

Customers must wear a face covering, such as a cloth mask, while inside at all times.

The new executive order also enables restaurants that do not serve alcohol to offer in-house dining to the public 24 hours a day and allows dance studies to open following the same guidelines as gyms.

For outdoor recreation, the hours of operation restriction on parks previously implemented under Executive Order No. 1478 are removed and will be established by the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks or local authorities. The prohibition on fishing tournaments under Executive Order No. 1473 is also removed.