RESTAURANT ASSOCIATION UPDATE – MAY 29

The Restaurant Association has received confirmation of amendments to the COVID-19 Public Health Response (Alert Level 2) Order 2020, please note the amended Order will come into force 12 noon Friday 29th May.  The amendments are being consolidated at the moment and as soon as the new Order is available, the association will send it to members.

The association understands that there is some confusion around these amendments. It is seeking clarification on a number of matters and will update as soon as possible. It is also updating the Level 2 Guidelines and will share once it has been finalised. However, if you have any queries on these amendments, please get in touch via info@restaurantnz.co.nz

The main changes from the previous Alert Level 2 Order are:

  • An increase in the social gatherings cap from 10 to 100 (including for tangihanga, funerals and faith-based gatherings)
  • Clarifying that event facilities, and hospitality businesses and social gatherings can have multiple groups of 100, provided they are in separate ‘defined spaces’
  • Removing the 10 person per table limit for hospitality businesses
  • Allowing counter service for non-licenced hospitality businesses, with the intention of allowing customers at fast-food restaurants or cafes to leave their table to order or collect food
  • Removing the requirement for a residential address to be recorded for contact tracing purposes
  • Clarifying that social gathering rules apply to faith-based gatherings and community club activities (except those that are carried on together with the sale and supply of alcohol under a club licence)
  • Removing the requirement that the Director General of Health must authorise tangihanga or funerals
  • Small passenger services have been removed as a close proximity business and now come under the public transport exemptions
  • Exemptions for services provided by Corrections and Oranga Tamariki have been extended

Key considerations for the hospitality industry:

Restaurants / cafes        

  • The overall limit on numbers is 100.
  • Multiple groups of 100 are allowed provided they are in separate ‘defined spaces’.
  • 1 metre physical distancing is required and there must be at least 1 metre between tables.
  • Only one server serves at any table, where practicable.
  • Records must be kept to enable contact tracing for workers and customers.
  • Customers must be seated at a table except where using the toilet, paying or departing, ordering and collecting food and drinks (see below).
  • Ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter is allowed for non-licensed premises only, provided that physical distancing is maintained.

Takeaways

  • Takeaway food can be ordered from the counter of any establishment, irrespective of whether patrons are able to dine-in or not.
  • 2 metre physical distancing is required. Record keeping is not mandatory.
  • Encourage pre-ordering online, over the phone or via an app to reduce lines and queuing.

Bar

  • The overall limit on numbers is 100.
  • Multiple groups of 100 are allowed provided they are in separate ‘defined spaces’.
  • 1 metre physical distancing is required (except for friends and whanau) and there must be at least 1m between tables.
  • Only one server serves at any table, where practicable.
  • Records must be kept to enable contact tracing for workers and customers.
  • Customers must be seated at a table except where using the toilet, paying or departing. Ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter is not permitted.
  • You can’t play pool or a gaming machine in the same area that food and drink is being consumed – though businesses are free to set up pool tables or gaming machines in a clearly separate space to the food and drink area.
  • You can sit on a bar stool at a high table. It doesn’t have to be a traditional type of table and chairs.

Temporary Variations to Employment Agreements

To operate at Level 2 and to continue to retain your employees and sustain the viability of the business you may require your current employees to undertake a temporary variation to the terms and conditions of their current employment agreement – with reduced hours for example. Any changes that are potentially detrimental to the employee’s standard terms of employment requires a robust consultation process in good faith with your employees prior to confirming any changes in writing. Please see the resource on temporary variations here (you must be signed in to view this link).

For more information from the Restaurant Association visit restaurantnz.co.nz