KIMT News 3 - Minnesota health officials are ramping up the state's efforts when it comes to compliance checks for bars and restaurants.
Minnesota Department of Health partnered with the Department of Public Safety, Labor and Industry, and Agriculture to perform compliance checks on more than 150 bars and restaurants in several communities.
Teams conducted checks in Mankato, St. Peter, Waseca, Faribault, and New Ulm August 28 and 29; and Carver and Scott counties September 4 and 5.
Out of the 167 establishments visited: 88 business were following requirements, while 79 were not in compliance.
Issues ranged from people not wearing masks, not social distancing, or a lack of preparedness plan and worker training.
"We know that most establishments are taking these safety precautions seriously, and we applaud those many bars and restaurants for their efforts to protect workers and the public," MDH Assistant Commissioner Dan Huff said. "We also know that a handful of bad actors can create a ripple effect and impact the entire industry."
Since July 13 when masking went into effect, MDH has investigated 68 case clusters of patrons visiting 66 different businesses. Thirty-eight of these met the definition of an outbreak with 1,210 people infected with COVID-19.
Health officials have identified another 58 suspected outbreaks involving employees at bars and restaurants.
This shows that what we do has an impact on case count.
"These numbers represent a fraction of the thousands of bars and restaurants in the state," Huff said, "but we all have to do our part."
You can find a StaySafeMN Customer Checklist for bars and restaurants here.