Worker shortage may keep some restaurants from fully reopening

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CLAYTON, Mo. – Restaurants and bars in St. Louis County and City can fully reopen to 100% and stay open until their normal closing times. However, some businesses say they won’t be able to adopt those changes because they don’t have enough workers.

Tomorrow morning, St. Louis City Mayor Tishaura Jones and St. Louis County Executive Sam Page are expected to announce new health orders that loosen restrictions for restaurants and bars.

Some restaurant workers in the Central West End say they already don’t have enough staff for the reduced capacity and hours so they won’t be able to fully reopen despite the new health orders.

“We already have tables we could be seating but we physically don’t have the staff to serve these people,” said one worker at the Drunken Fish.

Workers also are saying it’s harder work now because so many people left the industry.

These are the changes that are expected to be announced:

1. All businesses will be able to operate at 100% capacity as long as they adhere to CDC distancing and masking guidelines

2. St. Louis City and County will align masking mandates to CDC guidelines

3. Going forward, all St. Louis City and County public health orders will be aligned to be the same

4. Bars and restaurants will be allowed to stay open to their normal closing hour. In St. Louis City, bars will be able to stay open until 1:30 AM or 3:00 AM depending on their license. Bars must still adhere to CDC distancing and masking guidelines.

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