Beginning May 7, the state will lift all restrictions on businesses and organizations aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19, and will instead encourage facilities to follow a slate of recommendations.
The new Universal Best Practices guidance released Thursday lifts all restrictions on capacity and social distancing at facilities, including performing arts venues and amusement parks, as well as rules requiring restaurants to space tables at least six feet apart.
Instead, the state is encouraging businesses to take steps to space customers, whenever possible, and keep in place other protective measures including plastic barriers and one-way directional signs.
Businesses and organizations are allowed to continue requiring masks, if they choose, as well as any other COVID-19-related measures they may already have in place.
The new guidance document replaces the more than 30 industry-specific regulations released in 2020 that included rules for the operation of everything from massage parlors to movie theaters.
“What we’ve really tried to do is keep it truly universal. So whether it is restaurants or retail or whatever it is,” said Gov. Chris Sununu today during his weekly press conference.
The state did release a set of stand-alone guidance for overnight summer camps.
On Thursday, Sununu also said all state employees still working remotely are being told to return to in-person work on May 10. At that time, members of the public will be allowed to re-enter public spaces to complete state business. Masks will not be required inside state buildings, unless a local municipal ordinance is in effect, though employees and members of the public will be allowed to wear masks.