WI Gov Bans Gatherings Of 50 Or More People As Part of COVID-19 Response

WI Gov. Tony Evers has directed the Department of Health Services to issue an order banning mass gatherings of 50 or more people. As it relates to the business community, it is important to note that office spaces, manufacturing facilities and some types of retail establishments are exempt.

The governor’s order went into effect at this morning.

Exemptions to Gov. Evers’ order include:

  • Manufacturing, processing, distribution and production facilities
  • Office spaces
  • Restaurants and bars as long as the requirements listed below are followed:
    • Operate at 50 percent of seating capacity or 50 total people, whichever is less
    • Preserve social distancing of six feet between tables, booths, bar stools and ordering counters
    • Cease self-service operations of salad bars, beverage stations and buffets
    • Prohibit customers from self-dispensing all unpackaged food and beverages.
  • Shopping malls and other retail establishments where large numbers of people are present but are not generally within arm’s length of one another for more than 10 minutes

The full order can be read by clicking here.

Also today, President Donald Trump announced guidelines from the CDC titled “15 Days to Slow the Spread,” which included a recommendation to “avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people.”

It should be noted that President Trump’s guidelines are simply recommending avoiding groups of 10 or more, while Gov. Evers has actually prohibited most gatherings with more than 50 people.

President Trump’s guidelines include:

  • Avoid social gatherings in groups of 10 or more people
  • If you work in a critical infrastructure industry, as defined by the Department of Homeland Security, such as healthcare services and pharmaceutical and food supply, you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule. You and your employers should follow CDC guidance to protect your health at work.
  • Avoid eating or drinking at bars, restaurants and food courts – use drive-thru, pickup or delivery options

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