In the past few days, some of the largest salon suite concepts including Sola Salon Studios, MY SALON Suite, Salons by JC, Phenix Salon Suites and Image Studios and the 6,000+ independent hair stylists that work in them have banded together. They are collaborating on communication to California officials in response to new closures implemented in the state.
The companies' CEOs are asking the governor to consider reopening their salon suites, saying that because of the unique layout and design, salon suites have the ability to meet the health and safety standards much like a dental or other medical office facility.
“Out of 6,000 stylists working in our collective locations, only 14 have tested positive for COVID-19. None of their customers have been impacted,” says Jennie Wolff, chief marketing officer, Sola Salon Studios. A recent report from the CDC is also referenced in the letter to the Governor and staff, pointing to the safety of salon businesses when proper disinfection and mask wearing protocols are followed. The study showed no transmission from two stylists infected with SARS-COV-2 to the 139 clients they served during the window when they were infected and still working.
And while California offered some personal care professionals—hair stylists, nail technicians, and massage therapists—the option of performing services outside, many are questioning the practicality of this set-up.
“While we appreciate them taking a proactive approach in trying to keep salon professionals working, this just isn’t sustainable. Most of our locations have more than 25 members working out of our salon suites and realistically all of those members can’t be outside providing services at the same time. There isn’t enough outdoor space to allow for that,” said Ken McAllister, CEO of MY SALON Suite. “We have some of the most comprehensive protocols in the salon industry and moving services outside will actually make it harder for us to adhere to the sanitation regulations we already have in place in an environment that is more controlled. Our hope with this letter is to bring attention to this safe way of opening up our salon suites.”
The letter drafted to the state government opens this way:
Safe Inside Salon Suites – Case for Reopening on the Merits of Our Unique Space Plan
Dear Governor Newsom, Officer Angell, Chief O’Leary, Mr. Steyer, and Ms. Kirchmeyer:
Thank you for your service during this difficult time. We are writing this letter on behalf of the salon suites sector in California to make the case for safely opening our locations based on the merits of our model. We respectfully and urgently ask for your consideration to get thousands of hard-working beauty professionals safely back to work.
The brands herein signed represent nearly 6,000 self-employed beauty professionals who operate within the suites and studios in our California locations. Each of our companies operate throughout the state and Phenix Salon Suites is headquartered in San Diego. Nationally, our brands comprise over 1,000 locations with over 30,000 self-employed beauty professionals in 44 states. Our model is uniquely different in its private one-on-one venue. Suites have clear safety advantages for clients and beauty professionals that warrant consideration for reopening.
Because of our unique layout and intentional design, salon suites have the ability to meet the health and safety standards much like a dental or other medical office facility. This intentional design also allows us to keep the entry door locked to prohibit walk-ins and other foot traffic to minimize contact."
Sola Salon Studios has created a landing page to help stylists take action as well as a change.org petition that has nearly 10,000 signatures and growing. At the landing page, there are links stylists can follow to support the cause by submitting a letter to local officials along with other ways for their voices to be heard.
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