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Gov. Ducey announces dine-in restaurants can reopen May 11

The Arizona Restaurant Association unveiled a “Welcome Back to the Table” guidance plan intended to help restaurants.
People at a restaurant. (Photo: monkeybusinessimages via Thinkstock)

ARIZONA, USA — Arizona Governor Doug Ducey announced in a press conference Monday that dine-in restaurants can reopen beginning Monday, May 11.  

There will be physical distancing inside these establishments, the governor said. Restaurants will have this week to prepare their dine-in openings.

According to the Arizona Restaurant Association (ARA) President and CEO Steve Churcri, restaurants have been losing 27 million dollars a day since the governor's executive order. Although restaurants will be allowed to dine-in, service will look different. 

In response to Governor Ducey’s announcement, ARA unveiled a “Welcome Back to the Table” guidance plan intended to help restaurants restart kitchen equipment and rehire staff among other items.  

“We are thrilled as an industry to reopen restaurants and return to business in accordance with the new guidelines set forth by Governor Ducey today,” says Chucri. “Most importantly, there will be many procedures in place by restaurateurs to ensure the utmost safety and health of diners and staff.” 

The ARA recommends maintaining social distancing by following restrictions adopted by the State in compliance with CDC guidelines.

The recommendations also included:

  • Proper distancing between patrons
  • Limiting the number of total patrons to 10
  • Usage of technology to decrease the number of patrons
  • Increased sanitation methods
  • Moving away from physical menus

Restaurants across the Valley are eager to reopen, including Song Bird Coffee & Tea in downtown Phoenix. The home-style café is eager to reopen to full service and welcome customers back. 

“Seeing the people show up to support us made it a lot more beneficial," says  Atticus Prost, a barista at Song Bird. "Our safety is just as valuable as theirs and even though we want to be here to provide such a good service to them, we need their help." 

Chucri says the ARA is already working with supply chains to make sure they have adequate supplies to make the transition.

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