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The National Restaurant Association and ServSafe® released an updated version of its COVID-19 Operating Guidance incorporating new information on best practices to train staff on risk mitigation regarding the spread of COVID-19. The Operating Guidance continues to incorporate the latest information from sources including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).
Key updates on employee training and education include:
“Given the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and the evolution of learnings shared by the scientific community and governing bodies, it is important that operators prioritize staff training and risk mitigation regarding the spread of COVID-19,” said Larry Lynch, senior vice president of Science and Industry for the National Restaurant Association. “The foodservice industry is a leader in adapting and training employees in best practices for food safety and this COVID-19 training is an extension of those best practices. It’s essential that owners and operators operationalize this training and revisit it with staff frequently.”
This is the fifth version of the COVID-19 Operating Guidance since it was released by the Association and ServSafe in April 2020. In addition, ServSafe has made available free training videos to provide hands-on, educational resources on COVID-19 best practices for restaurant and foodservice workers covering topics such as conflict de-escalation, safe reopening, takeout and delivery.
Download the latest COVID-19 Operating Guidance here.
Today, the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) began accepting grant applications. Tom Bené, President & CEO of the National Restaurant Association released the following statement about the launch of the federal relief program:
“Today’s launch of the Restaurant Revitalization Fund provides long-awaited hope for tens of thousands of restaurants who are on a long path to recovery. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has done admirable work in creating a totally new relief program in just two months, and we appreciate our strong partnership with them.
“The question on the minds of many is what happens when applications outpace the available funds. Restaurants are operating in an uncertain environment, with continued needs to restore customer confidence in their safety and to bring workers back into the economy. We will continue to work with policymakers to secure a comprehensive set of solutions, including additional funding for the RRF.”
The restaurant industry has been the hardest hit during the pandemic. Between March 2020 and April 2021, restaurant and foodservice sales were down $280 billion from expected levels and 110,000 restaurants have closed permanently or long-term. For nearly 15 months, securing industry-specific recovery grants has been the primary goal of the National Restaurant Association.
Because funds are limited, the Association encourages all eligible applicants to apply as soon as possible. While priority groups will have 21 days of priority access, applications from all eligible applicants will not be ruled ineligible if they apply during the prioritization period. The SBA will coordinate the time of submission to determine the order of grant distribution.
Resources for operators: