About half of bars, restaurants in COVID-19 compliance

September 10, 2020 GMT

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — State and local inspections of dozens of bars and restaurants for compliance to coronavirus requirements found about half were following the rules in Minnesota.

Inspections were done at 167 establishments outside the Twin Cities metro. During a recent visit to Minnesota, Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, said rural communities needed to do more to reduce the spread of the virus.

The inspections done in Scott and Carver counties and the cities of Mankato, St. Peter, Waseca, Faribault and New Ulm found 88 bars and restaurants were following state COVID-19 requirements and 79 were not.

A Minnesota Department of Health summary says 31 establishments were referred for follow-up inspections by state health and licensing officials for issues such as customers and workers not wearing masks, failure to maintain social distancing, and a lack of preparedness plans and worker training, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.

The Department of Health says the state has received more than 800 complaints of COVID-19 violations at restaurants and bars since mid-July and has referred more than 400 complaints to the appropriate agencies.