The Mayors of Minneapolis and St. Paul announced today (January 12, 2022) that they will institute a new vaccination mandate specifically for bars and restaurants. The policy goes into effect for both cities on January 19, 2022.
Details of the mandate:
- Requires bars and restaurants (and other places that serve food and drink) to only admit patrons that show proof that they’ve received a full course of COVID vaccine, which includes a paper copy or photo of their vaccination card (or a vaccination app) OR proof of a negative test from a lab (NOT the over-the-counter rapid tests) within the previous 72 hours.
- The policy specifically covers bars, restaurants, and places like stadiums where food and drink are consumed.
- There are a variety of exemptions like schools, etc.
- It applies to everyone over the age of 5 who are eligible for vaccination. In Minneapolis, a negative test is required for children between the ages of 2 and 5. In St. Paul, those under 5 years old are exempt.
- This does not include “outdoor” locations in both cities, meaning the area is fully open to the outside on two or more sides.
The St. Paul mandate is in effect for at least 40 days, and there is no end-date noted for Minneapolis. The Mayors of both cities cited the move as critical to avoid the need to close businesses, and that they’ll have “flatten the curve” of COVID cases.
MLBA’s Executive Director Tony Chesak released the following media statement:
“We understand the seriousness of COVID and the public health for the community, patrons, and employees. The hospitality industry has complied with all the mandates, regulations, and more for COVID. But it’s hard to understand a vaccination mandate that’s unjustified and unscientific. It targets just one specific industry after zero science or data driving the decision, and zero caring about our dedicated front-line workers who will now add “enforcement agent” to their plates. The only scientific thing we know is that it has devastated the hospitality industry in other cities with these same mandates.
They say we’re in this together – but this mandate shows that the hospitality industry is clearly targeted alone. We know both vaccinated and unvaccinated people spread the virus. And it happens at schools, work-out facilities, other retailers, sporting events, and more.”
The actual language of the Minneapolis mandate is located here: Text of the full emergency regulation in Minneapolis.
This information will be updated with additional facts over the next few days by email or on our website. In you need more information, please contact the city offices listed below:
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey
Minneapolis Department of Health or Area License Inspector
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter
St. Paul Department of Safety and Inspection