Manitoba COVID-19 quarantine rules a ‘free for all’, says frustrated pub owner

The owner of a downtown Winnipeg pub says his staff are turning away multiple people every day who aren’t isolating properly during the COVID-19 pandemic,

Chris Graves of the King’s Head Pub took to social media earlier this week to lament a rash of out-of-province visitors trying to patronize his bar without quarantining.

Read more: Manitoba to budget $1.2 billion to fight COVID-19 in 2021

Graves told 680 CJOB that not long after posting details on the pub’s Instagram account about those who are being refused entry, a server texted him that four more people from British Columbia tried to get in without having properly isolated first.

“Yesterday alone, we turned away about eight (people),” Graves said. “Every day we do. Every day.”

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Graves said he’s concerned about people travelling to Manitoba, as the province has thus far avoided a third wave, but he fears it might be history repeating itself, as the province has been in this position before and it didn’t take long for COVID-19 cases to spike.

“The biggest concern has always been the safety of the staff… and for our patrons,” said Graves.

“I’ve seen this story before, and what happens is that Manitoba seems to be doing OK — but for some reason, our government just does not have a handle on this interprovincial or international travel.

“I’m pretty sure that when (people from out-of-province) leave, they’re going to find another (local) place to go dine in, and that’s frustrating too. It’s sad when we have to be the ones to turn them away.”

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Graves said his business was shut down for three-and-a-half months last time restrictions increased, and he’s concerned about his ability to stay open should that happen again.

The province said Tuesday it intends to continue fighting the virus, with $1.2 billion earmarked for the effort against the coronavirus and its variants over the next fiscal year.

Click to play video: 'King’s Head Pub on Code Orange restrictions' King’s Head Pub on Code Orange restrictions

King’s Head Pub on Code Orange restrictions – Sep 28, 2020

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