Re-opening Chelsea: Phase I initiated

Hello all you #ChelseaStrong folk,

I am working on distilling, organizing, and sharing the massive amounts of “re-opening” information issued by the Commonwealth so that it is understandable and helpful.  To be honest and fair, even the Commonwealth recognizes that the vast quantity of information that has been posted is overwhelming.  I will continue to upload all this content to the Reopening Chelsea section of the Chamber website.  It is a work in progress and will take a little time, but I don’t want to delay any further in sending out information that may help the industries that were allowed to open this past Monday, and those that will be eligible to open next Monday.  I wish each and every one of you to be prepared and progressing toward your own re-opening.

Welcome to Phase I

I think it is easiest to think of the state’s guidance—and by guidance I mean rules—as two rooms at house party (which someday we’ll be able to have again):

  1. First, there are the rules that each and every business and organization must follow, regardless of which industry you’re in.  That’s the main room at the house party.  You and everyone else arrived and went through the front door to that main room.  Everyone at the house party and everyone reopening their business or non-profit must:
    1. Bring the host, Rich, a bottle of something nice.
    2. Meet mandatory safety standards for workpkaces, including distancing, cleaning & disinfecting, staffing & operations, etc.
    3. Write a COVID-19 Control Plan.  Here is a template in English that you should download.  Aqui es una plantilla en espanol que debe descargar.
    4. Once you have completed your COVID-19 Control Plan, print this Compliance Attestation poster, check the boxes, sign it and put it in the window of your workplace.  Cuando haya completado su plan de control COVID-19, debe imprimir este póster de certificación de cumplimiento, marcar las casillas, firmarlo y ponerlo en la ventana de su lugar de trabajo.
    5. Next, print and display the Employer Poster so you remember all the safety standards required for your workplace…those to which you have just promised your customers that you and your staff will adhere.  Luego, imprima y muestre el guía del empleador para que recuerde todos los estándares de seguridad requeridos para su lugar de trabajo … aquellos a los que acaba de prometer a sus clientes que usted y su personal se adherirán.
    6. Similarly, print out and display the Worker Poster to keep your employees attuned.  Del mismo modo, imprima y muestre las Reglas para Mantenerte Seguroenel Trabajo para mantener a sus empleados en sintonía.
    7. Lastly, for all employerssource the masks, gloves, sanitizers, etc. that you will need to reopen your business or office.
  2. Second, there are re-opening rules that are specific to each industry.  This is the room at the house party that you move to after takingyou’re your coat and getting your drink.  It may be the kitchen, it may be the back patio, it may be the downstairs den.  This second room is filled with your industry colleagues…everyone in this room is in the same industry sector as you and each sector will have its own (1) sector-specific safety standards, (2) protocol summary, and (3) checklist.  Each sector must follow its respective rules:
    1. Opening May 18th:  Construction / no hay guía en español para construcción
    2. Opening May 18th:  Manufacturing / apertura 18 de mayo:  Manufactura
    3. Opening May 18th:  Places of Worship / apertura 18 de mayo:  Lugares de Adoracíon
    4. Opening May 25th:  Office spaces / apertura 25 de mayo:  espacios de oficina
    5. Opening May 25th: Laboratories / apertura 25 de mayo:  laboratorios
    6. Opening May 25th:  Hair Salons & Barbershops / apertura 25 de mayo:  salones de belleza y peluquerías
    7. Opening May 25th:  Car Washes (exterior) / apertura 25 de mayo:  lavado de vehículos (exterior)
    8. Opening May 25th: Pet grooming / apertura 25 de mayo:  aseo de mascotas
    9. More to come when available

OK, to summarize:  There are some rules for everyone, every business or non-profit.  Then…when your sector is eligible to open…there are additional rules for each specific sector or industry.

Phase II will re-open no earlier than June 8th.   June 8th is the best case scenario.  You can find what sectors are eligible to re-open on our website.  And of course, there will be another email going out as we get nearer to Phase II.

Ditto for Phase III, which will re-open no earlier than June 29th.

Phase IV is nightclubs, concerts, large venues…not including professional sports which has its own timeline.  It’s best not to focus on Phase IV and focus on your phase for now.

If you have found a good supplier of PPE, sanitizers, etc., and want to share with your Chelsea comrades, please let me know.  If you are having trouble finding this equipment, please let me know.

If you are reading the emails about the small grants that I am sending to you, I hope that you do apply, especially for the less onerous ones.  It’s all in the at-bats and the swings.

Second-to-lastly, and this is the topic of another email, the Financial Impacts Group of the Chelsea Response Team has been working with the Chelsea City Council to establish a sizeable fund for Chelsea businesses hard hit by the pandemic.  We hope to introduce the topic at the June 1st City Council meeting.  Some businesses will need help in reconfiguring workspaces to adhere to the new rules;  will need new technology in order to make their businesses work;  will need help in securing the protective equipment now required.  We are also discussing a separate fund for restaurants, hotels, and such hospitality businesses.  I will keep you updated on the progress of this effort and you may see an email from me asking you to consider signing a letter and sending it to the City Council.

And finally, as I have been sharing these communications with every Chelsea business I can, regardless of membership, and because this email does get forwarded on to businesses that are not members…if and when you are able, please do consider joining the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce.  Like most of you, our revenues ground to a halt at the same time that the pandemic hit.  And then, to add insult to injury, despite significant effort on my part, on the parts of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives, the American Society of Association Executives, and others, 501c6 organizations such as Chambers and Associations were twice denied eligibility for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) administered by the SBA.  There are still billions of dollars of PPP yet available, but we are not allowed to participate in them.  So, if you’re not a member and you’re finding this information helpful to you, please think of joining if and when the time is right.  If you are already member and you’re finding this information useful, please consider gently referring a business to become a member of the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce.

Oh, does anyone still need help applying for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). ¿Alguien necesita ayuda para solicitar el programa de protección de sueldo (PPP)?  Please let us know.  Por favor, háganos saber.


Rich Cuthie, MBA, MSF, IOM

Executive Director

Chelsea Chamber of Commerce

308 Broadway

Chelsea, MA 02150

617.884.4877 x100