BUFFALO, N.Y. — Salons and barbershops are included in Phase Two of New York's reopening plan, but some owners locally say the guidelines from the state are unreasonable.
"Obviously I would love to get back to work and I want to put back into the economy what we've been lacking and I would love to be making an income again, but I feel like it's really becoming an issue to be able to reopen under these guidelines," said Lauren Metz, the owner of D.tail Beauty Bar.
Under Phase Two, barbershops and hair salons will be able to cut, color and style customers' hair. However, a number of more non-essential services like beard trimming, nose hair trimming, nail services, makeup application, facials, threading/tweezing and waxing will not be permitted. All employees will have to undergo mandatory COVID-19 testing every 14 days during Phase Two as well.
"It almost feels unsafe to be operating that way if we have to work under such tight restrictions," Metz said.
She added, "Going that much time without making money and now having restrictions on not being able to double book, only seeing one client at a time and book extra time for sanitization in between, it cuts back about 50 percent of our business."
Additionally, Capello Salons told customers in a status on Facebook, "Unfortunately, at this time, we will not be opening during Phase Two due to the unreasonable guidelines placed on us by NYS."
The status went on to say, "We feel this is extreme in nature and are not going to ask that of our employees."
"The testing is just really over the top," Owner Joseph Freitas told 2 On Your Side. "The every two-week testing. It's just gonna be so difficult to monitor that and then it becomes a liability issue for staff members and salons and it's just not feasible. It's not gonna work that way."
Freitas said safety is still a top priority and they were prepared to reopen potentially next week, but he says businesses just can't afford to operate under these mandates.
"Give us reasonable guidelines and let our clientele be the judges as to whether or not they want to walk into the establishment. As they do when they go into a grocery store or any other big box company," said Freitas.