Today’s Business Dashboard update has positive news that extends beyond the state’s most-populous counties — Maricopa and Pima — moving to the next phase of safely resuming certain business operations with enhanced mitigation measures. As of today, a total of 8 counties, Apache, Cochise, Coconino, La Paz, Maricopa, Navajo, Pima, and Yavapai, are in the moderate transmission level. Most counties that have yet to reach moderate benchmarks for COVID-19 have metrics moving in the right direction. One county, Greenlee, has reached the minimal transmission level.
This is a credit to all of the things Arizonans have done to reduce the spread of COVID-19. We’ve worn masks, physically distanced, washed our hands, and so much more. In short, we’ve made smart decisions for the common good. It’s important that we keep that up.
A critical component of keeping our trends going in the right direction is working with Arizona businesses to ensure compliance with requirements for safe operations. In preparation for more businesses like gyms, bars serving food, and indoor theaters to begin operating with reduced occupancy, ADHS and county public health and environmental health partners have been collaborating on mechanisms for inspection and enforcement if necessary. Over the past month, we’ve initiated agreements with most county health departments to investigate complaints when we learn that a business may not be operating according to the requirements outlined at azhealth.gov/businessCOVID19 for businesses paused by Executive Orders 2020-43 and 2020-52.
This partnership will streamline coordination between ADHS and county health, who are the boots on the ground for public and environmental health in Arizona. The state will be coordinating complaints received by public health, and these complaints will be investigated by the local or state health department, depending upon jurisdiction. For counties that do not contract with the state, ADHS will investigate complaints and initiate enforcement.
Complaint investigations involve inspectors going onsite to substantiate the complaint through observation and interviews with employees and customers. If a business is found to violate the COVID-19 prevention requirements, enforcement action, up to and including the temporary closure of an establishment until health guidance is met, can be taken immediately to protect public health and safety. ADHS, along with county public health and environmental services departments, have many professionals who regularly make site visits and inspections such as health care and child care licensing surveyors, sanitarians, and Smoke Free Arizona investigators. Public health is well-equipped for this task.
We need your help too. If you believe a business isn’t following these requirements, which were established for the safety of customers, employees, and the broader public, you can share your concerns so local and state officials can follow up as needed.
There are multiple ways to file a complaint with ADHS, including:
- Submitting a complaint online at azhealth.gov/complianceCOVID19
- Calling our COVID-19 Compliance Hotline at 1-844-410-2157
For businesses to remain open and for Arizona to continue on this promising trajectory, it’s critical that establishments and their customers comply with public health requirements. With our county partners and with your help, we all can make that happen.