By Justin Seward
Bow Island’s Chelsea’s Hair Designs will be a part of the Phase 1 tentative provincial economic relaunch beginning on May 14.
The small hair salon’s employees are ready to get back to work but are uncertain as to when the green light will be given as the province has not clearly communicated with businesses as of yet.
“They did say it was tentative,” said Chelsea Geldreich, owner of Chelsea’s Hair Designs.
“I’ve been planning since we’ve been shut down for reopening and as I saw Saskatchewan’s guidelines and stuff come up. I was starting to really try and plan, trying to order disposable masks and things so we would be ready. It’s nearly impossible to find PPE (personal protective equipment) right now.
“We have zero guidelines yet from AHS, Alberta Health (or) Alberta period. We have no guidelines on what is going to be required for us yet.”
In Manitoba, it’s recommended you wear a mask and in Saskatchewan it is mandatory to wear a mask, she added.
“Those things will impact whether we open on May 14,” she said.
“If we can’t get PPE and we’re required to wear it, we won’t be able to open May 14.”
Geldreich says one of her suppliers does have masks now and is hopeful she would get some PPE by the end of last week.
“It is going to be an extra expense. We’ll figure that out when the time comes,” she said.
“I have cloth masks that are really good quality. They are three layers, they have a pocket for a filter and if I could wear those, that would cut down on my costs.”
Chelsea’s Hair Designs will have to take more time in between customers to sanitize everything that clients have touched, which Geldreich thinks will limit how many people’s haircuts will be done than normal.
“We’re only going to be able have one customer at a time. We’re not going to be able to double book and won’t be able to do anybody while a colour is processing like we used to do. “I do fear our income being impacted for awhile yet.”
Geldreich is the full-time employee, while there are a couple of part-time hairdressers in town that rent a chair.
“We’re very lucky in here because we have space. The people working will be able to work the same days they’ve always worked and won’t have a split shift. We’ve got a lot of space between our stations,” she said.
“We have two stylists in here at a time. What would impact us are whole families coming in and that would impact us maybe little bit. We really don’t have the space for distancing for more than four to six people.”
She said they would start by calling clients that they cancelled during the first month of lockdown.