Christen Smith, The Center Square
|June 30, 2020 09: 00 AM.
P ittsburgh area bars and pubs must stop serving alcohol onsite efficient Tuesday as validated cases of COVID-19 in Allegheny County rise.
County Executive Rich Fitzgerald and Health Department Director Dr. Debra Bogen released the order Friday after taping 393 brand-new cases last week. Bogen said positive test rates climbed up from less than 2 percent to more than 6 percent since Friday.
” We’re going the incorrect instructions,” Fitzgerald stated. “While most locals and businesses have been following the guidelines, these requirements and mitigation procedures resolve the locations that have been determined during case examinations.”
Allegheny County moved into the green stage of Gov. Tom Wolf’s phased economic reopening plan on June 5. The least limiting phase permitted bars and restaurants to reopen dining rooms at 50 percent capability, so long as personnel used masks and other social distancing policies were executed.
Since June 30, even customers must wear masks– unless eating or drinking– and infractions of the policy will result in the facility closing down for at least one week while authorities examine.
” It is my duty to secure the health and safety of all Allegheny County locals and while we’ve taken substantial actions to track and minimize the spread of this infection, we are still seeing significant increases,” Bogen said. “We’re taking these steps today to more safeguard the health and safety of all homeowners through my authority under the Pennsylvania Disease Prevention and Control Law.”
KDKA reported that health officials said two Pittsburgh areas, Oakland and South Side, are of particular concern.
” These are extreme steps, however we have to take steps now to restrict the community spread that threatens those who are older, high-risk or otherwise immunocompromised,” Fitzgerald stated.
Wolf supported the choice in a declaration to journalism Monday and encouraged other counties to recognize the example Fitzgerald and Bogen are setting.
” This was the right move to work to stop the current spike of COVID-19 cases in its tracks and to remind all residents and services that the very best defense we have in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and keeping Pennsylvanians safe is to continue to follow the mask-wearing requirement, practice social distancing, and follow security guidelines even and especially throughout the green stage of reopening,” he stated.
The Pennsylvania Licensed Bar and Pub Association stated, nevertheless, the measure goes too far in limiting the state’s hardest struck industry.
” We find the current choice … to be an extremely broad brush stroke that punishes law-abiding licensed dining establishment owners, staff members, and customers who have actually followed assistance provided by both state and local authorities,” said Curtis Mason, association president, in a letter resolved to state and local leaders Monday. “They should not be penalized because of the actions of a few “bad stars.'”
Mason suggested that inadequate enforcement of the original preventative mandates triggered the recent break out and targeting everyone in the market as a result “is a death sentence.”
” Failure of government to implement these guidelines should not be the reason for closing companies that are supporting mitigation efforts through thorough compliance with guidelines,” he said.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health has confirmed simply shy of 89,00 0 cases of COVID-19 considering that March 6. Of those, 78 percent of patients have actually recovered and 6,600 have passed away.