Listen to Facts, Science & Experts-Shut it Down, Now, America. Humans Will Not ‘Do the Right Thing’ On Their Own

By: Patrick Maguire

Book Chapter: Human-to-Human Service

Posted: 03/15/2020

It’s time to take the guesswork out of the equation and shut all non-essential businesses down, now. Yes, that includes dine-in restaurants. Given the facts and science, the crowds gathering in tight quarters in South Boston, MA last night were disgraceful. The joints packed to the gills with long lines down the sidewalk shot themselves in the foot. It was selfish and short-sighted. Shutting it all down now is the responsible thing to do for the greater good of all. And the US, state, and local governments sure as hell better step up and help restaurants, small businesses, and all of their employees suffering through this crisis. If we can spend trillions of dollars bailing out big banks in 2008, we sure as hell can take care of restaurants, small businesses and their workers, many, pillars of our communities.

Sad to say, but too many humans can’t be trusted to ‘do the right thing,’ despite great intentions. Please read this post from (Restaurant) Industry United group member, Danielle Egger:

Thank you for creating this group. As a former state health inspector and foodborne illness investigator/biological scientist, I’d like to weigh in on this.
I understand closing restaurant doors is going to be financially devastating for many folks (I’m in the biz – this impacts me as well). We all have to make a living. However, this is a special circumstance that affects EVERYONE – not just the restaurant industry.
While we’d like to believe our restaurants are practicing the sanitation plans they claim to have activated in light of this situation, let’s be real. It’s not possible for them to maintain those standards when they’re 20 people deep at the bar.
Yes I was guilty of being in the masses yesterday. NO MORE. I’m not going to throw the restaurant under the bus, because every single restaurant here has the same issues – no matter how well they’ve trained their staff.
The restaurant I visited yesterday posted signs adamantly stating their “increased sanitation measures”. Here is a list of violations I observed while sitting at the bar:

1. On 14 different occasions, servers pushed the tongs out of the way to grab fruit garnishes with their bare hands. Four of those servers were observed handling cash immediately before touching the garnishes. No hand washing.
2. A bartender cleared soiled plates and glasses from the bar to the bus tub, then proceeded to reach – with their bare, unwashed hands – into the mint to make mojitos. No hand washing.
3. The wet rags were not placed in sanitizer solution between wiping down soiled spots at the bar.
4. The sanitizer solution in the pail was heavily soiled with food debris, visible from ten feet away. Food debris drastically reduces the efficacy of the sanitizer.
5. The fruit garnish tray was wide open and directly in front of where patrons walked up to order drinks. This includes one gentleman who graciously turned his head 20° to the right to sneeze.
6. The 3 compartment sink water was cruddy – all three compartments.
7. We were there for approximately 2.5 hours. In that 2.5 hours, ONE bartender washed his hands. ONE, folks. And it was one time. The cash changing hands here was too frequent to count.
8. Servers were scooping ice with cups instead of a handled scoop. The cup they just handled with their unwashed hands has now potentially contaminated the ice.
9. The bar caddies were placed with unwrapped straws directly in front of bar patrons, some of which reached over those straws to pay the bartender, coming in physical contact with the straws.
10. The menus were sticky and visibly soiled.
11. The condiment baskets were also sticky and visibly soiled.
I’m not blaming the staff. They were in the weeds and just trying to pump out the orders. This is the pattern everywhere, though.
No matter how well written your “increased sanitation measures” may be, they’re only as effective as the team that follows them.”

I will repeat one more thing I have shared everywhere I could: Restaurants, small businesses, and their teams are the first to answer the call and donate their spaces, time, creative effort and energy, food, drink, gift certificates and hospitality for people who are hurting and charitable causes in their neighborhoods and communities. It’s time that we step up and demonstrate our appreciation as neighbors and a nation and prove that we really mean that “we’re all in this together” and save their lives and livelihoods, please. Thank you-Patrick Maguire

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