What is an ‘Essential Business’ in Minnesota During COVID-19?
UPDATE 3/25/20 2:00 PM): Governor Walz has issued a "Stay at Home" order for Minnesota starting Friday, March 27 at Midnight. READ ALL THE DETAILS OF THE MINNESOTA STAY AT HOME ORDER HERE
Workers who provide critical services are exempt. Exemptions are based on federal guidance from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security with some Minnesota-specific additions. This includes, but is not limited to jobs in:
- Healthcare and public health
- Law enforcement, public safety, and first responders
- Child care
- Emergency shelters
- Homeless shelters
- Food and agriculture
- News media
- Water and wastewater
- Critical manufacturing
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz hasn't issued a 'shelter in place' order for Minnesota yet, but if he does, only essential businesses will be allowed to stay open. So just what is an essential business?
Well, that's what the good folks at the Department of Homeland Security attempted to define, as states across the country are implementing 'shelter in place' orders that will close any 'non-essential' business.
So just what is an 'essential business?' Well, they're quick to point out that it's a state-by-state decision, and that their list is only advisory, and not a legal definition. But according to THIS document, if you work in any of the categories, you're working in an 'essential business,' that would still be allowed to work even if Gov. Walz orders a 'shelter in place.'
Categories like communications, chemicals, commercial facilities, critical manufacturing, dams, defense industrial base, emergency services, energy, financial, food and agriculture, government facilities, nuclear reactors (material and waste), information technologies, water, transportation systems, and-- the big one here in Rochester-- healthcare and public health.
That's a pretty big list, isn't it? So even if a 'shelter in place' order is issued here in Minnesota, chances are you STILL might be allowed to work-- maybe from home, mind you-- but you'll still be called to work.
Of course, everything is subject to change-- and change fast-- but for more information, check out the Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency list HERE.