Michigan Restaurants File Federal Suit to Keep Indoor Dining Open
On the eve of the latest mandated restaurant restrictions, Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association has filed a federal injunction to save businesses.
Almost immediately after Governor Whitmer's Sunday speech outlining tougher restrictions for businesses in an effort to get the Coronavirus outbreak under control, the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association was critical:
We recognize that there are no easy decisions right now and so we have an appreciation of the challenge before [MDHHS] Director Gordon and all Michiganders as we continue our fight against COVID-19. That said, we are profoundly disappointed by his decision to shutter restaurants for a second time this year – this time with no safety net of federal stimulus dollars to soften the blow to already ailing operators and employees.
-Justin Winslow, MRLA CEO
A federal injunction was filed on November 17 to keep dining rooms open at Michigan restaurants. They say, "We have taken this action only after careful deliberation and as the last available option to prevent the outright devastation of restaurant operators and their hundreds of thousands of employees across the state."
The MRLA predicts more than 40% of restaurants will close, at least temporarily, if dining rooms are closed and says it offered to compromise with public health officials, limiting capacity to 25% and instituting a 10 pm curfew. Concerned about the 250,000 hospitality employees are likely to be laid off from restaurants over the holiday season, the lawyers were called.
We are hopeful for a swift and decisive victory in court so restaurant operators may return to what we know they do best – adding value to our lives and our economy by providing a great meal and exceptional hospitality in a safe, socially distanced, sanitized and regulated environment.
-Justin Winslow, CEO Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association
This story is far from over. Grab some popcorn and settle in, but don't spoil your dinner.