Ellison takes action against Wabasha County gym that refuses to close

Ellison takes action against Wabasha County gym that refuses to close
FILE - In this Wednesday, May 27, 2020, file photo, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison answers questions during a news conference in St. Paul, Minn., about the investigation into the death of George Floyd, who died May 25, while in the custody of Minneapolis police officers. Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said Sunday, May 31, that he decided Ellison needs to lead the case. (Source: John Autey/Pioneer Press via AP, Pool, File)

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KEYC) — Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison’s office filed a lawsuit and motion for a temporary restraining order Wednesday to prohibit a Wabasha County gym from remaining open to the public during Gov. Tim Walz’s four-week lockdown.

The Attorney General’s Office says it first reached out to Plainview Wellness Center to educate management on the requirements of Executive Order 20-99. In response to this response, Ellison’s office reported that management at Plainview Wellness Center threatened to continue to operate and stop open to the public.

“Governor Walz has made the tough but smart choice to dial back activities that data have shown spread COVID-19,” Ellison said. “I know these requirements are hard on folks — but fortunately, the vast majority of people and businesses affected are making that sacrifice and complying with the order, because they know we’re all responsible for stopping the spread of COVID. I’d much rather that everyone comply — but when it’s necessary to go to court to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect compliant businesses from unfair competition, I won’t hesitate to do so.

“I remind everyone that COVID-19 is deadly serious: it doesn’t care who you are, where you live, or how you contract it. More than 10 million Americans, including more than 275,000 Minnesotans, have already suffered from it, some with long-lasting consequences. More 250,000 Americans, including more than 3,000 Minnesotans and my own mother, have already died from it,” continued Ellison. “No one is immune from COVID-19, but we all have the power to stop it.”

State officials say this is the first enforcement action Ellison’s office has brought since Executive Order 20-99 went into effect Friday. They add that this is the third enforcement action the State has needed to bring against the more than 100 businesses and events that Ellison’s office and its partners at the Minnesota Department of Health and Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry worked with to gain compliance.

Ellison’s office adds that Minnesotans can report COVID-19-related concerns or complaints through the COVID-19 online complaint form on the Minnesota Attorney General’s website or by calling the Attorney General’s Office at (800) 657-3787.

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