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Restaurants are becoming 'scapegoat for reflexive shutdown': NRA says
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The National Restaurant Association is refuting claims that restaurants are contributing to the uptick in coronavirus cases nationwide, saying that they have become a "convenient scapegoat for reflexive shutdowns."
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The NRA issued a letter to the National Governors Association (NGA) claiming that there is "no scientific evidence" linking restaurants around the country — which they say operate within the Association's COVID-19 Safe Operating Guidance and follow local public health safety regulations — to the increase in COVID-19 cases.
Tom Bené, president and CEO of the National Restaurant Association said that "data tying systemic community outbreaks of COVID-19 to restaurants has yet to emerge" and restaurants "are too commonly labeled as 'super-spreaders.'"
The letter comes as the nation struggles to rebound from a now-resurgent coronavirus. The fresh load of cases are delivering yet another blow to an industry reeling from lockdowns and occupancy restrictions. And with fears surrounding the virus, it remains unclear how readily Americans will return en masse to dining out.
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"There is an unfounded impression that restaurants are part of the problem, and we are suffering as a result of inconsistent, restrictive mandates," Bené said.
His rebuttal comes just after the CDC reported that adults who test positive for coronavirus are twice as likely to have reported dining at restaurants within the past two weeks, whether it's indoor, patio or outdoor seating.