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This is how restaurants are reimplementing the Covid-19 guidelines as Delta variant spreads across the country



Little Rock, Arkansas – It’s almost like déjà vu. This is how restaurant owners in Arkansas feel lately as the new Delta variant spreads across the state and country.

Due to fear of previous coronavirus restrictions, majority of the restaurants in the state now started to implement some of the Covid-19 guidelines that were in force for a year since last March.

According to some restaurant owners, the majority of the restaurants are encouraging masks again, and some are even closing down their inside dining rooms. Although none of those guidelines are mandatory, restaurant owners feel that they should be a good example for everyone and keep their workers and guests safe.

“It’s just about getting to that herd immunity and if this is what it takes, that’s what we got to do,” Daniel Bryant, owner of Hill Station, said.

“For now, with things going the way they are and the uncertainty in the air we’re just going to hang back for a little bit and see what happens,” Jack Sundell, co-owner of The Root Café, said.

While some of the owners already implemented the guidelines, some are about to do it so in the upcoming days. One of them is Bryant, who will set in place some protocols once again.

“We are now requiring all of our employees, whether they’re vaccinated or not, to wear masks and we’re re-encouraging all of our patrons to do the same,” he said.

As the daily numbers are on rise especially in the last two weeks in Arkansas, the vaccination rates improved a little bit. However, Bryant says that he will tighten the protocols if there is no serious improvement in the numbers of vaccinated people soon.

“It’s all about the vaccinations,” he said. “We need everybody to get vaccinated and if we have to do more, we’ll do it.”

The Root Café reopened their indoor area just after July 4. According to the owner Sundell, they were happy to see people coming back again enjoying their free time at their restaurant. However, the latest Covid-19 wave pushed them months back as they decided to close the indoor area again.

“It’s something we had been working towards for about three months, to get everything ready again, and it just happened to time really unfortunately with an ongoing surge in Arkansas,” he said.

Many other restaurants are also encouraging their guests to follow certain policies in an attempt to lower the number of new daily cases in the state.