NORTH TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — It’s been a little more than a week since Confer Plastics in North Tonawanda got the green-light to re-open and company President, Bob Confer says things are going great.
“The reopening process has been quite easy for us and that’s probably because health and safety were old hat to us,” he said.
The company's strategy is being used as a model in Niagara County’s “ReStart, ReThink and ReConfigure Niagara,” plan, a blueprint to help other business prepare to reopen.
“We have a rather extensive set of rules and protocols, it’s actually pages long," Confer adds.
Some of these new rules include daily temperature checks and a series of COVID-19 related questions. Confer is also discouraging employees from using common areas like breakrooms by limiting the number of chairs inside, unplugging fridges, and putting up signs. He’s even hired a COVID-19 Administrator.
“We want to make sure there’s an extra set of eyes in there offering revisions if things don’t seem to be working or things need improvement,” Confer said.
Already, the COVID-19 Administrator, Nicholas Kocur, has made some adjustments for the employees.
“We’ve had to do things such as make ear savers for our masks," he said. "They just take the strain off your ears because nobody wants to wear a mask for 8 to 9 hours at a time.”
He’s also put up a color coding system to help employees identify high risk surface areas.
“The best advice I can give to someone for opening a business is the boy scout model, be prepared," Confer said.
“Another big key component is being understanding as an employer that these changes are needed and also understanding that these changes aren’t easy,” Kocur adds.
Confer is advising business to bring in their staff slowly. That way employers can build a culture around COVID-19 that will last for the foreseeable future.