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The J.E.R. Chilton YMCA at Rockwall will be resuming operations next week.

The YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas has reported the local branch is one of seven locations in the Dallas area scheduled to reopen Monday under Phase 1 of a plan adopted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The official  release from the agency:

The YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas is looking forward to welcoming back members, seeing active older adults and continuing to provide programs and solutions to keep people healthy in mind, body and spirit. After closing its facilities in March due to COVID-19, the Dallas Y is working towards a phased reopening plan that will begin on Monday, June 1st and continue throughout the coming weeks.

For the safety of YMCA members, program participants and staff, the Dallas Y is being very thoughtful and intentional about how branches and programs reopen. With counsel of medical experts and best practices from other YMCA’s around the country, a phased reopening is planned under the guidance of state and local authorities that will unfold in phases:

Phase 1 – Monday, June 1:  

    •    Frisco Family YMCA

    •    J.E.R. Chilton YMCA at Rockwall

    •    Moody Family YMCA

    •    Park South Family YMCA

    •    Plano Family YMCA

    •    Semones Family YMCA (Town North)

    •    White Rock Family YMCA

This is a unique situation so to protect the safety of staff and members, the Dallas Y will get through phase one before a decision is made as to when additional branches will re-open. The Y will ensure it has considered the proper precautions, safety measures, and staff training to effectively reopen additional branches.

Curt Hazelbaker, President and CEO explains “We have decided to take a staggered approach to make sure we are appropriately ready to reopen. Our plan is to open seven branches in the first phase to see what works and what doesn’t. We’ll open the remaining in phases to protect our YMCA staff and members. This approach allows us to prepare our facilities and train staff while helping members get comfortable with new routines. We will be communicating with members to know what to expect when they walk into their YMCA.

We will follow the State’s orders, including capacity limits, keeping showers and locker rooms closed, and requiring everyone to maintain six feet of social distance. Our staff and volunteers have been focused on helping our community through the pandemic and are looking forward to seeing our Y family again soon.”

The Y plans to help keep members and staff safe by having limited facility hours to ensure sufficient time for cleaning, allowing limited access to certain equipment and areas in the facility, keeping locker rooms closed and promoting social distancing. Facilities will allow 25% capacity, adhering to guidelines by the CDC and local health officials.

Additionally, Y staff will be wearing face masks/coverings and encourage members to do the same. Members will be asked to limit their time in the Y to 60 minutes to allow other members to visit while capacity is limited. All indoor and outdoors pools will be accessible with limited activities when facilities open. Upon reopening, all Y members will have access to any YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas facility for added convenience during limited operations.

“The safety of our members is our top priority. All open areas inside the Y have been evaluated and redesigned where necessary to help ensure social distancing between members,” said Crystal Chavarie, VP of Risk Management for the Dallas YMCA. “Signage will be placed prominently throughout the facility to drive awareness of this requirement. We are also spacing out equipment, alternating our treadmill and cardio usage to every other machine, limiting capacity in classes so everyone has the recommended six feet of space. We have dedicated staff to sanitize equipment after use as well as ample amounts of EPA-Registered disinfectant wipes and sanitizer available for wiping down equipment. We will also perform a deep clean of our branches each night.”

“We are looking forward to seeing our members but understand there are those that may not feel ready to come back yet. The Y is here for you, whether you can be in a Y on June 1st, or you will be continuing to stay safe at home,” said Rebecca Lee, VP of Membership & Wellness. “Our virtual classes will continue, as will our Y staff outreach to Seniors and other at-risk members, checking in, visiting with them and even helping run errands to the pharmacy or the grocery store so they can remain safe at home.”

Additional reopening plans for camps, youth sports, day camps, and more are also being developed. More information will be made available online at https://www.ymcadallas.org/reopening.

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