As restaurants and bars in Region 8 are set to see new mitigation rules implemented this weekend, State Senator Don DeWitte (R-St. Charles) is asking the Governor to reconsider certain aspects of his order.
In a letter sent to the Governor today, Sen. DeWitte requested that the Governor reconsider the total ban on indoor dining at bars and restaurants, and instead, restrict alcohol sales to table service only, allowing establishments that serve food to continue to provide table service while keeping the appropriate health and safety measures in place.
“It’s hard to deny that congregating at a bar, often shoulder to shoulder with people you don’t know, is a big contributor to the spread of the virus. I’m not refuting that, as it is very difficult to control your social environment in that sort of setting,” said Sen. DeWitte. “But what does come into question is why the Governor is lumping food table service with those kinds of activities.”
The letter also points out the lack of transparency when it comes to contact tracing.
“I have yet to see any specific contact tracing data that proves that dining at an indoor table has the same infectious rates as congregating at a bar,” said Sen. DeWitte. “In fact, on Tuesday when these mitigations were announced, I reached out to the Illinois Department of Public Health for data and have yet to hear back.
“I find it difficult to believe that a group of six people enjoying dinner at a table that is six feet apart from the next is at the same risk of contracting and spreading the virus as individuals standing, drinking, and singing at a bar.
“As the weather continues to get colder, restaurants in our region will not be able to survive this round of restrictions. Outdoor dining will simply not be an option for them.”
Sen. DeWitte’s letter to the Governor can be found here.