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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Cheryl Youakim (DFL)

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Legislative Update: Gov. Walz Releases COVID-19 Proposals & Recommendations

Friday, March 13, 2020

Dear Neighbors,

Today, Governor Walz and Minnesota Department of Health held a press conference to discuss further steps being taken to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in Minnesota.

To protect public health and slow the rate of transmission, the Minnesota Department of Health recommends implementing the following mitigation strategies:

Postponing or Canceling Certain Events

These events include:

  • Large events of 250 or more people should be postponed or canceled
    • This includes but is not limited to concerts, conferences, and professional, college, and school performances or sporting events
  • Smaller events that are held in venues that do not allow social distancing of 6 feet per person
    • This includes gatherings in crowded auditoriums, rooms or other venues
  • Events where the majority of participants are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 should be limited to no more than 10 people
    • This includes gatherings at retirement facilities, assisted living facilities, developmental homes, and health support groups

Individuals and Families at Home

  • Monitor local information about COVID-19 in your community
  • Practice personal protective measures, including keeping social distance of at least 6 feet and washing hands frequently
  • Put household preparation plan in action

Individuals at higher risk for severe illness should avoid large gatherings, avoid travel, and stay home as much as possible

Schools and Childcare Centers

  • Cancel or postpone all large events and gatherings of more than 250 people
  • Limit school-to-school events
  • Provide alternative learning environments for high-risk children
  • Sick students and staff should stay home until symptom-free for at least one day

Assisted Living Facilities, Senior Living Facilities, and Adult Day Programs

  • Implement social distancing measures
  • Reduce large gatherings
  • Alter schedules to reduce mixing, such as staggering meals and other activities
  • Have residents stay in facility
  • Limit visitors and programs with external staff
  • Screen attendees, staff, and visitors for temperature and respiratory symptoms

If cases occur among staff or residents, consider short-term closures for cleaning and contact tracing


  • Encourage staff to telework when feasible
  • Implement social distancing measures if not teleworking, including requiring at least 6 feet between workers, staggering work schedules, and limiting in-person meetings or gatherings
  • Limit non-emergency work travel
  • Consider temperature and respiratory symptom screening of staff and visitors entering buildings 
  • Require workers who are ill to stay home
  • Provide accommodation for individuals at higher risk for severe illness, such as teleworking or separate office

Community and Faith-Based Organizations

  • Follow general guidance for group gatherings
  • Consider offering video or audio of events
  • Determine ways to continue providing support services to individuals at increased risk of severe disease

You can also find the Governor's and the House's legislative proposals to better prepare our health care system and provide relief to Minnesotans affected by COVID-19: 


The situation is evolving quickly and I continue to monitor it closely. I'll be in touch with more information as it becomes available. 


Cheryl Youakim