PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Allegheny County Health Department Director Dr. Debra Bogen announced Tuesday she’d release a new coronairus order today.
“I am considering modifying the event limits and restrictions for outdoor food and beverage service at restaurants,” Dr. Bogen said. “I leave this open to change depending on our cases and the other metrics we use in making those decisions.”
KDKA’s Lindsay Ward spoke to a non-profit this morning that works closely with the restaurant industry and finds out what restaurants need to do to keep their doors open.
“Frankly, there couldn’t be any tighter restrictions than there are right now,” Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association President and CEO John Longstreet said.
For Allegheny County, that has meant no inside dining and a pause on alcohol service for restaurants and bars.
Longstreet said restaurants have been desperate.
“I mean, how could you not be desperate? Peoples lives, their homes, their family, their employees are all riding on this right now,” he said.
The pandemic proved to be too much for some restaurants, like Nola on the Square in Market Square. They just closed permanently earlier this week.
Other restaurants are finding themselves closing temporarily after employees test positive.
On Tuesday, county leaders said that contact tracing continues to show up mostly in bars and restaurants.
But for Longstreet, it’s not the industry as a whole that’s making mistakes.
“Because of some bad actors, very few in the restaurant industry, they’re shedding a light on how the virus can spread if they don’t follow the simple rules of social distancing and wearing face masks,” he said.
And it’s wearing the mask he says that will keep the industry alive.
“It’s not your right to potentially kill another person. It’s not your right to put a business out of business because you refuse to wear a mask and then all restaurants get shut down,” he said.
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