Situation Report COVID-19 Updates | June 1, 2020
Governor Tim Walz calls it ‘the most difficult week in Minnesota’ s memory : “W hat the world has witnessed since the killing of George Floyd on Monday has been a visceral pain, a community trying to understand who we are and where we go from here.’”
 
The New York Times” today wrote about “The Minnesota Paradox”: a region with one of the country’s highest standards of living by many measures also has some of the largest racial inequities in the U.S.

And here we are, in the middle of it. The killing of George Floyd is challenging all of us, perhaps in ways we don’t yet understand. But I do understand one thing: the drumbeat of change continues to grow louder, more insistent and, as we are seeing, of immediate urgency.
 
In March of 2020, in response to COVID-19, the Center for Economic Inclusion released an Inclusive Recovery Agenda. The strategies that the most inclusive U.S. cities have adopted are included in their call to action .
 
I’ve read that agenda. SPACC is absolutely committed to strategies necessary to move our community forward. We are building a shared vision, establishing cross-sector partnerships, building the voice and power in BIPOC communities, re-framing inclusion as integral to growth, and adopting inclusive policies and programs. I urge you to review the Agenda, endorse it, identify actions your own company can take this summer to align your investments, employment, procurement, and policy agendas.
 
Because the most important strategy is “Inspire and sustain bold leadership.” Few of us feel up to such a challenge; yet, we are called to do so based on our positions, our agency, our humanity. I am inspired and encouraged by Barack Obama’s tweet today because it is, indeed, our charge: “How to Make this Moment the Turning Point for Real Change.”   
 
Find out where can you help businesses rebuild after this past weekend’s violence.
 
In terms of our tracking of the COVID-19 pandemic and civil unrest and our response to both: 
 
SHOUT-OUTS, #BusinessDoingGood
  • Today’s shout-out is to ALL of you. Untold images of people, friends and strangers all, all pitching in to help with clean-up this weekend in the aftermath of this past weekend’s violence.
  • Urgent ask: donate money to your favorite food shelves as well as Second Harvest & Sheridan story, rather than bringing food somewhere. The system is overwhelmed at the moment, but the food deserts will be there until the businesses re-build. 
 
Updates from the Governor
  • EO 20-68 issued Thurs, May 31: extending the curfew to include Sunday night 
  • EO 20-67 issued Thurs, May 30: implementing and coordinating cooperative firefighting, health, and peace officer assistance 
  • EO 20-66 issued Thurs, May 29: providing for emergency relief from regulations to motor carriers and drivers
  • EO 20-65 issued Thurs, May 29: issuing curfew for Saturday and Sunday
  • EO 20-64 issued Thurs, May 28: activating the National Guard
 
Monday’s Media Briefing, 11:30am
  • Curfew for 2 more days: 10pm to 4am. 
  • No word yet about highway closures planned for this evening.
  • Memorial for George Floyd has been scheduled for Thursday.
  • For the second night, we had security and order on our streets. Has been a very tough week, but thanks to our public servants for how these last 2 nights went (including those maintaining utilities).
  • “The whole nature of why we do these things is to allow for that peaceful expression. We saw large, peaceful protests, focusing on the systemic changes that get to the heart of why we’re in this situation.” ‘We’ includes our state and our nation. “A society that does not put equity and inclusion in the center of it is certainly going to eventually come to the places where we’re at.”
  • “This is a moment of inflection, a moment of real change. People demanding this will not take a commission or report; will require fundamental change.”
  • Last night, 7000 MN National Guard members mobilized. Violence significantly reduced; one fire whose origin is still TBD. Immediately extinguished.
  • Sunday, at approximately 3pm, 5-7K people came to demonstrate at US Bank Stadium. All coming together in a very large and very peaceful demonstration at US Bank Stadium. Also saw that group move onto the freeway, and that moment when we saw the truck on the freeway…. Miraculous that there was no loss of life.
  • DPS Commissioner Harrington provided more detail on the truck driver who was driving on the freeway and who almost hit protesters: MNDOT and MAC and state patrol had planned to close freeway at about 8pm. At about 4:30pm, as we were monitoring the group at US Bank Stadium, and saw the movement towards the freeway, we asked MNDOT to lock down freeway early. MNDOT started shutting down entrance ramps. The truck driver was on the freeway already, turned onto I35W before we got barricades to block off access. This was his 2nd run of the day, running empty. He was speeding, yes, did see the crowd and panicked. Kept moving forward… saw someone fall in front of him and he slammed on the brakes. Vehicle did stop without hitting her. No information that this was an intentional act.
  • Updated information that the vast majority of rioters are from within Minnesota. Yes, some vehicles were stolen and license plates removed, but limited numbers of people have come from outside the state.
  • Major General Jensen, AG of MN National Guard, also spoke:
  • This morning we received guidance from the Governor re demobilization of MN National Guard and return of part of the Guard to their armories. Not an order to return the entire organization back home.
  • Any redeployment is coordinated by the MAC and approved by the Governor
  • Plan will remain flexible, and expandable based on the security situation develops.
  • With over 7K Natl Guardsmen currently mobilized, he is confident they can reduce their presence while honoring the needs of police and state patrol.

  • Monday, MDH Commissioner Malcolm Update
  • Emphasis is on testing on long term care facilities with 22 more facilities tested.
  • Continuing to ramp up that testing. Intent is to see fewer deaths as a result, but in the near term they anticipate an increase in the death count.
  • We anticipate “waves” of pandemic impact, rather than just one “peak.”
 
 
Other Updates:

  • From ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS: Hours after the ACLU called Sunday for Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison to be involved in the George Floyd murder case, Gov. Tim Walz said Ellison will take the lead in the prosecution of the case.
 

 

 
  • After unrest in St. Paul, some businesses will remain closed despite Monday's reopen - From ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS: The Mall of America has decided to postpone its planned June 1 reopening of retail stores. "As soon as we confirm a new reopening date, we will share it," a statement read. "Additionally, Curbside Pickup at Mall of America has been suspended. A notice will be posted on our website when it resumes."
 
  • Restaurants reopen with restrictions as some hunger for more - From MPR: The loosening of restrictions don't go as far as many restaurant owners had pressed for and that neighboring states are permitting. Salons, barbershops, tattoo parlors and other personal services businesses can also open their doors with limits on how many clients they can serve at a time.
 
Legislature
  • Special Session likely to convene soon.

  • The POCI caucus has called for immediate legislative funding for Minneapolis and St. Paul rebuilding efforts and the arrest of all ex-Minneapolis police officers involved in the death of George Floyd.
 
County and City Level
Saint Paul: We have been kept abreast of reports from the City’s Emergency Operations Center. Over the weekend:
  • A line was maintained at the Marshall Lake Bridge. No crossovers were allowed there or at the Ford Bridge (some arrests were made to maintain that line).

  • Director Schute sent out the non-emergency number: 651-291-1111; if you have a text or a picture, push those via email to and they will be delivered to the SPPD to review.

  • SPPD providing updates on the situation on twitter: @sppdmn

  • There has been significant mobilization of National Guard – 290 were at the Capitol complex Sunday evening. They are ready to be deployed if they are needed.

  • Mayor Carter has joined the business community for two briefings to business over the last week.
 
 
COVID-19 update as of 6/1 /2020
Confirmed cases in Minnesota: 25,208
Confirmed cases in U.S. (as of 6/1): almost 1.8M
Confirmed cases globally (as of 6/1): over 6.2M
Cases requiring hospitalization: 3,086 (representing 12.2% of total)
#s currently hospitalized: 549 (down from 606 on 5/29)
#s no longer needing to be isolated: 19,441
#s tested: 255,592
Total deaths in Minnesota : 1,050 (855/81.4% cases in long term care or assisted living facilities)
Total deaths in U.S. (updated 6/1): almost 105K
Total deaths globally (updated 6/1): almost 374K
Cases in Counties represented:
Hennepin County: 8,514 (616 deaths)
Ramsey County: 3,075 (128 deaths)
Dakota County: 1,349 (57 deaths)
Washington County: 645 (32 deaths)
 
 
Visit our e vents page for webinars and events and the Ramsey County Means Business page for information to help businesses navigate resources during this pandemic. If you need more personalized assistance, contact our Rapid Response Team to assist you in finding an answer.
 
Be safe and be well!


B Kyle
President/CEO
Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce