What it means to be green

Chester County Commissioners, in a press release today, said the county is ready to go green. That word came in response to Gov. Tom Wolf’s announcement of today saying the five-county Philadelphia region will enter the green phase on June 26.

“[T]he county is fully prepared to further relax restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” the release said.

Commissioner’s Chair Marian Moskowitz said in the release, “County is very ready to move to the next level of re-opening, the green phase. Our public health strategies will ensure that businesses and organizations can re-open or expand their operations safely and that residents can confidently enjoy some of the services that they have been greatly missing…But green does not mean ‘full-throttle go.’ Just as we have asked throughout the yellow phase, we implore everyone to continue to make every effort to contain the coronavirus.”

According to Commissioner Josh Maxwell, “The Chester County Health Department remains focused on a strategy that best monitors and responds to COVID-19; health practices that help to contain outbreaks, minimize community spread of coronavirus, and break the cycle of transmission.”

The release further quoted Maxwell as saying “The Health Department team will continue to conduct investigations of everyone who has a confirmed-positive COVID-19 test, and they have expanded contact tracing to more quickly and thoroughly notify everyone who is in close contact with those who have tested positive. Finally, we have been increasing access to diagnostic swab testing for anyone who is a high risk for COVID as well as for anyone who may be asymptomatic.  Bringing these three things together helps us better understand the presence of COVID-19 and monitor any surge in cases in Chester County.”

But what does it mean to go green? According to the county’s website, the CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines are to be followed.

Work and congregate setting restrictions:

  • Continued Telework Strongly Encouraged
  • Businesses with In-Person Operations Must Follow Updated Business and Building Safety Requirements
  • All Businesses Operating at 50% Occupancy in the Yellow Phase May Increase to 75 percent Occupancy
  • Child Care May Open Complying with Guidance
  • Congregate Care Restrictions in Place
  • Prison and Hospital Restrictions Determined by Individual Facilities
  • Schools Subject to CDC and Commonwealth Guidance

Social restrictions

  • Large Gatherings of More Than 250 Prohibited
  • Masks Are Required When Entering a Business
  • Restaurants and Bars Open at 50 percent Occupancy
  • Personal Care Services (including hair salons and barbershops) Open at 50 percent Occupancy and by Appointment Only
  • Indoor Recreation, Health and Wellness Facilities, and Personal Care Services (such as gyms and spas) Open at 50 percent Occupancy with Appointments Strongly Encouraged
  • All Entertainment (such as casinos, theaters, and shopping malls) Open at 50 percent Occupancy
  • Construction Activity May Return to Full Capacity with Continued Implementation of Protocols
  • For individuals, the green phase includes handwashing, face coverings, social distancing, environmental surface cleaning a.k.a. cleaning counters
  • For employers, monitoring workforce for indicative symptoms, developing contact tracing procedures following employee COVID+ test, following federal, state and local regulations and guidance


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