[ST. PAUL, MN] – A day after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new guidance allowing for reopening places of worship, Governor Tim Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan Saturday announced they have partnered with Minnesota faith leaders on a plan for places of worship who decide to open to do so as safely as possible. Through consultation with Minnesota faith leaders, the Minnesota Department of Health has developed additional guidance for faith-based communities, places of worship, and services. Starting May 27, places of worship may open at 25 percent occupancy if they adhere to social distancing and other public health guidelines to keep congregants safe.
“I have had many meaningful conversations with faith leaders over the last few weeks,” Governor Walz said. “From a personal and public health perspective, the decision around places of worship has been a challenging one since the beginning of the pandemic. We know large gatherings of people raise the risk of spreading COVID-19. We also know worship is an essential part of many Minnesotans’ lives, including mine.”…
· In all settings, ensure a minimum of 6 feet of physical distancing between households.
· In indoor settings, occupancy must not exceed 25 percent of the normal occupant capacity as determined by the fire marshal, with a maximum of 250 people in a single self-contained space.
· In outdoor settings, gatherings must not exceed 250 individuals.
· Develop and implement a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan in accordance with guidance developed by the Minnesota Department of Health and available at https://mn.gov/deed/guidance