Coronavirus Update for Restaurants in Wisconsin

With the ongoing and increased uncertainty over the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), here at the WRA our primary focus is – and will continue to be – to educate and support our restaurant and supplier partners through this difficult and challenging time. We are taking proactive measures to advocate for and alert members to changing policies, guidelines and best practices.

WRA has put together helpful resources targeted for employers, employees and others in the industry. Please check back often as we will continue to update this website as new information comes available and new developments arise.

Resources for Restaurants

Check here for the latest government updates. You’ll also find helpful resources including a COVID-19 employer toolkit, how to get started with delivery services guide, ideas to support employees and an FAQ.

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REOPENING RESOURCES

WRA advises restaurant operators to carefully open if you feel it is right for your business and your community. If you do choose to open, it's important to do everything possible to mitigate the risk of spread and build confidence in customers.

The situation is still very fluid and things can change very quickly. Local health departments (counties and municipalities) can legally issue an emergency order to continue Safer at Home provisions within your area. Some have issued their own orders and the details vary. It’s imperative to keep an eye on what’s going on in your city and county to ensure that you are not in violation of local mandates, opening yourselves up to fines and license revocation. We encourage you to check directly with your local health department for the latest information for your area and check in often as regulations can change quickly. See List of Local Health Departments

When you decide to open up and welcome back dining room customers, we encourage you to check out the Wisconsin Promise Program and other helpful resources developed by WRA as well as the state guidelines recently released by WEDC (Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation).

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Resources for Restaurant Employees

Important resources on unemployment benefits, supplemental food programs, health insurance, temporary job listings and mental health resources.

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Wisconsin Eats – WRA Dining Guide

Looking for a place to dine?  Check out the WRA Dining Guide of Member Restaurants.  Search by city, zip code, type of cuisine offered and more.  Services and hours for restaurants vary right now, so make sure to call ahead for details.

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WHAT’S GOOD IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD

All around our communities people are pulling together, helping each other, adapting and thinking outside the box.  Take a moment to hear some feel good stories and innovative strategies that restaurant businesses are implementing to keep their business going and to be there for their communities.

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Ask WRA logo horiz

Check out these answers to restaurant operations questions that are frequently asked of our Ask WRA team.

See Q&A’s

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Single-use Menus

Customers will decide when it feels safe to dine in your restaurants. Providing single-use menus may be one way to earn their trust and show you care. Ask for Wisconsin Restaurant Association pricing when emailing for info.

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Breaking

Governor Extends Statewide Mask Mandate

Governor Tony Evers today declared a new public health emergency  in Wisconsin and issued a new face coverings order effective immediately. The orders are in response to an increase of coronavirus cases across the state and on college campuses.

The mask mandate requires everyone age 5 and older to wear a mask while indoors, except at home. It is effective immediately and will expire on November 21st or with a subsequent superseding order.

While there will most likely be debate regarding the enforcement of this order, WRA recommends that restaurants comply with this mandate to avoid any liability or penalties. WRA will keep members alerted of any challenges or changes to the order.

The Governor previously declared a public health emergency under Executive Order #82, which remains in effect.

Mask Mandate/Order #1

Health Emergency/Order #90

WRA has signs for download to remind guests about social distancing and that masks are required.

Masks Required and Social Distancing Signs


Currently in Wisconsin, restrictions to stem the pandemic are being issued at the local level with the exception of the statewide mask mandate that goes into effect on August 1st. The situation is still very fluid and things can change very quickly. Local health departments (counties and municipalities) can legally issue an emergency order to continue Safer at Home provisions within your area.  It’s imperative to keep an eye on what’s going on in your city and county to ensure that you are not in violation of local mandates, opening yourselves up to fines and license revocation. We encourage you to check directly with your local health department for the latest information for your area and check in often as regulations can change quickly. See List of Local Health Departments

Keep in mind that if restaurants and bars in your area do not do a good job with implementing reopening best practices, local health departments will likely take action to impose stay at home closures for your area. It takes just a couple of bad examples to drive public concern.

On the flip side, customers need to make good decisions on what is best for them and their personal situation. In a press release sent out statewide, WRA urged customers to be patient and understanding as restaurants make decisions that are best for their business, their employees, their customers and their communities.

We encourage restaurants to check out the Wisconsin Promise program and other helpful resources developed by WRA as well as the state guidelines released by WEDC (Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation) and guidelines from the FDA on our website.


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EMPLOYEES WHO TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID-19 OR HAVE BEEN EXPOSED

Are you grappling with the issue of an employee who tested positive for COVID-19 or has been exposed to someone who has tested positive? You're not alone. Our Ask WRA Team has received quite a few questions from restaurant operators about this topic.  WRA provides resources with the latest guidance on how to handle the situation.

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Our Purpose

We Provide the Services and Tools for Members to be Successful

WRA membership includes thousands of foodservice businesses representing virtually every size and style of establishment in the state. Restaurateur members include fine dining establishments, mom-and-pop supper clubs, small cafes, fast food outlets, corporate chain restaurants, institutional foodservice operations, catering businesses and hotel and motel foodservices, to name a few. In addition to restaurateur and foodservice operators, WRA has hundreds of Supplier Associate Members that provide goods and services to the restaurant industry.

By uniting in an association, members gain access to information and services to help them better run and promote their businesses. And, a strong membership gives WRA powerful support in pursuing its mission to provide members the services and tools to be successful through advocacy, education and communication.

 

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Discounts on office supplies, technology, email marketing and shipping

Exclusive Member Discounts

WRA is proud to announce that we have partnered with new providers and members can now save on things like office supplies, technology, email marketing and shipping.

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Owner and Chef Discussion

Featured

Now Hiring—Resources for Employee Recruitment

We've heard from our members that staffing is the number one concern right now for restaurant operators. It's time to think outside the box on how to tackle this challenge. WRA offers resources for employee recruitment and managing a multigenerational workforce with some ideas you may not have thought about before.

Workforce Portal