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UK Spa Association launches guidelines to reopen spas

24 Jun 2020
Industry body, the UK Spa Association (UKSA), has revealed it’s official COVID-19 Reopening Guidelines.

The guidelines are designed to work hand-in-hand with the government guidelines for close-contact services which were released this morning – ‘Keeping workers and clients safe during COVID19 in close contact services’.

The government document is aimed at spas, hairdressing salons, beauty and nail bars, makeup, sports and massage therapy and well-being and holistic locations – however, the only facilities from this list allowed to reopen by the government are hair salons, beginning on 4 July.

At the time of writing, spas have been given no official reopening date.

The UKSA’s industry-specific guidance relates to the spa, salon and wellness sector, and is designed for the initial reopening period and anticipated social distancing restrictions.

Helena Grzesk, UKSA GM, stated: “While the government guidelines cover all industries with close contact work, our guidelines have been tailored specifically for spas and salons. Within this comprehensive document, spas will find the information they need to open in a COVID-19 safe way.”

The guidelines feature advice about managing risk of infection, returning to the workplace, PPE, social-distancing, cleaning and equipment, as well as information on how to approach treatments and handling treatment rooms.

The UKSA has also provided guidance on reopening pools and thermal areas, managing retail, laundry procedures, bookings and handling marketing and communication during reopening.

According to the industry body, the document is not a legal requirement and does not replace government guidance.

“Along with the industry in general we were disappointed to hear that the government has decided not to allow spas to reopen on the 4 July as hoped,” said Adam Chatterley, UKSA chair.

“However, it’s a milestone that Boris Johnson specifically referenced to spas in their own right in his speech. At the start of this lockdown journey, the government simply classified spas under a wider ‘massage parlour’ banner.”

“The initial draft guidelines the government issued to us as part of the BEIS advisory board woefully under-represented our sector, with little appreciation of the complexity and range of services that we offer.

“The good news is that now we’ve achieved this essential recognition, we can begin to demand more clarity for spas within these guidelines,” explained Chatterley.

“Our next task is to demand an urgent review of the reopening decision that has been made, with full disclosure on a future target reopening date that the government is working towards. We will continue to fight on our industry's behalf and we will not stop until we see spas back in business with the critical support and information that they need.”

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