This Bay Area company trains, certifies businesses with COVID-19 health guidelines

PETALUMA, Calif. (KGO) -- Before you enter a business, how do you know if the business is safe? For business owners, staying on top of ever-changing safety protocols can be challenging.

A new business launched in the Bay Area is designed to give assurances to both businesses and the consumer.

At the Save Energy offices in Petaluma, there are signs on nearly every wall showing their compliance with local safety regulations. The company specializes in window and door replacement and the signs are a direct result of the ever-changing rules put into place to comply with reopening requirements.

"We were off for seven weeks and we came back and it was pretty tentative. Are we doing the right thing?" says founder John Gorman.

Consumers are cautious of safety as well. ABC7 spoke with some outside a nearby restaurant who said safety is now always top of mind.

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"The hope is everyone is listening to local authorities and guidelines," says the man.

This is exactly why HealthSafety Qualified was created. Jim Stein is the founder of the 20-year-old American Ratings Corporation, which certifies businesses for quality. He recognized the need for guidance on COVID-19 safety.

"When the pandemic hit, a lot of us in the community thought, how can we help? We thought, we can't make ventilators or masks but we're really good at certifying companies. What they need now is standards and training and testing to follow safety standards so they can keep their workers safe and they can keep homeowners safe," says Stein.

Certification is rigorous and takes several weeks with a laundry list of requirements, including educational training, PPE and supplies, the appointment of a chief safety officer at each business and periodic audits, customer surveys and surprise inspections.

All to provide an extra layer of assurance- for the business and customer that safety is a top priority.

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ABC7 News reached out to the Marin County Health Department which says from a business education standpoint, Health Safety Qualified is a good idea to help businesses stay on top of changing rules but reminds business owners that the certification is not necessary to do business in the county.

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