There have been some questions as to how the directives stemming from Governor Bullock and orders from the Missoula City County Health Department are being enforced.

COVID 19 Incident Commander Cindy Farr provided details on enforcement.

“When the health department receives a complaint, they first reach out to the individual and they have a conversation about the order and why it’s important,” said Farr. “They talk about what needs to change and often this is all that needs to happen and both parties come away with a better understanding of how to fulfill both the spirit and the intent of the orders and the specific requirements.”

Farr said the Missoula County Sheriff’s office had to get involved initially.

“It’s true that not all individuals and businesses were immediately receptive or compliant,” she said. “When the first health officer’s order to close all bars and restaurants was issued, the health department enlisted the help of the Missoula County Sheriff’s Department and deputies did visit with a few bars that were still operating despite the order. Later spot checks showed that those places were compliant with the orders.”

Farr said the hope of all the agencies in authority is that all citizens and businesses will join the county and the state in the effort to control the spread of COVID 19.

“The orders are enforceable, but the reality is that we hope that instead of using a ton of resources forcing people to comply who are trying to get away with something that is risky, instead, we want to rely on individuals and businesses to take the restrictions seriously and to do what’s needed to slow the spread and keep themselves and their employees, their customers and the community safe.”

Farr records an update on You Tube each weekday with information about various COVID 19 topics.