חיפה
A coffee shop in Haifa is shuttered due to coronavirus
Photo: Shamir Elbaz
A coffee shop in Haifa is shuttered due to coronavirus

Israel to reopen restaurants, cafes by next week

Proposed outline by Health Ministry brings forward date for reopening, stipulates two-meter distance between tables, temperature checks for clients at the entrance to the establishment and ordering a place ahead of arrival

Itamar Eichner, Adir Yanko |
Published: 05.17.20 , 18:28
The Health Ministry decided Sunday that the country's restaurants and cafes can reopen by the beginning of next week after they were shuttered due to the coronavirus outbreak.
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  • The original outline by the ministry dictated that they would be able to open only at the end of May, which led to much criticism and protest on the part of restaurateurs.
    חיפהחיפה
    A coffee shop in Haifa is shuttered due to coronavirus
    (Photo: Shamir Elbaz)
    Health officials are formulating a guideline by which such establishments could remain open safely.
    According to reports, restaurants will have to put tables 1.5-2 meters apart, check costumers' temperatures at the entrance and require those arriving to book a place ahead of time.
    Outgoing Economy Minister Eli Cohen said that he was happy with the agreement reached with the Health Ministry on the matter.
    "It is a step we must take when the low morbidity rates are considered, which will allow tens of thousands of workers and employers to return to work and put the economy back on track," Cohen said.
    As coronavirus restrictions began to ease, restaurateurs protested that customers should be able to sit at their eateries and not only order takeaway food.
    The restaurateurs' union considered opening all eateries at the end of May, regardless of Health Ministry directives.
    עומר מילר הבעלים של "סוסו אנד סאנס"עומר מילר הבעלים של "סוסו אנד סאנס"
    Susu & Sons owner Omer Miller
    (Photo: Nadav Abas)
    Owner of the "Susu & Sons" hamburger chain Chef Omer Miller, opened his restaurant on Saturday and allowed people to eat at tables as a protest against the health regulations.
    Despite his illegal action, no police or municipal inspectors came to enforce the guidelines.
    Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai was among the most vocal proponents for the reopening of restaurants and cafes.
    רון חולדאירון חולדאי
    Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai meets with local restaurateurs to discuss reopening as Israel's coronavirus numbers improve
    (Photo: Moti Kimchi)
    "For the good of Israel, you must open the education system and the restaurants, or else there will be 70,000 unemployed in Tel Aviv," Huldai last week told Health Ministry Director General Moshe Bar Siman-Tov at a meeting that degenerated into a shouting match between the two.
    Tel Aviv municipality was also among the first to propose its own city outline for the reopening of restaurants and cafes.

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