Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

On their first day, vaccine mandates for Minneapolis and St. Paul restaurants met with grim resolve, temporary closures

Starting Wednesday, the cities are requiring businesses seat only customers who are vaccinated or can show a negative COVID test taken within 72 hours


January 20, 2022

Richard Tsong-Taatarii, Star Tribune

Mariam Kayali, right, had to show her COVID-19 vaccination card to server Aliya Hinz to dine in at the Hark Cafe downtown in Minneapolis on Wednesday.

On the first day Minneapolis required restaurateurs to check that dine-in customers are vaccinated, Frank Gambino had all the tables and chairs stacked in his four Andrea Pizza restaurants.

For now, it's takeout and delivery only. After the pandemic devastated the downtown lunch business and cut his revenue by two-thirds, Gambino could barely staff his kitchen and had no money to hire someone to check vaccination cards at the door, he said.

"We're already getting killed," Gambino said. "As much as I would love everybody to get vaccinated, it's just another reason for people not to come downtown. ... We're going to do the no seating, see how that goes for a week, and then we'll re-evaluate from that point and maybe we'll figure out something a little better."


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