Are you concerned about businesses that are still open?

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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - We've heard the questions and complaints from viewers, and so have state officials, about essential businesses.

Many people are reporting employers that aren't complying with social distancing or remaining open even if they don't seem like an essential business.

State Health Services Secretary-designee Andrea Palm addressed the matter at a public health news conference Thursday morning. She encouraged people to read the complete Safer-at-Home order CLICK HERE.

Secretary Palm explained, "If we detailed every single scenario, the thing would have gone on for hundreds of pages, and so we couldn't, in an order, answer every single question, so our colleagues at the WEDC are taking additional, specific questions."

Action 2 News reached out to the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, which has a website for businesses to help determine whether they're essential (CLICK HERE. The WEDC provided this statement:

At its core, the Safer at Home Order is about public safety and, specifically, about stopping the spread of COVID-19.

The businesses that have contacted WEDC to ask for clarification as to whether they’re Essential or Nonessential Businesses have made it clear they want to do what’s right to keep their employees safe and to protect their families, neighbors and friends.

If workers have concerns about whether best practices are being used in the workplace to keep everyone safe, we suggest they share their concerns with their employers. At the same time, we ask employers to listen to their employees and work out solutions that protect everyone.

The Order allows local law enforcement to step in if necessary, but we’re really counting on businesses to proactively do what’s right to keep their communities safe. Citizens with concerns about businesses violating the “Safer at Home” Order should contact their local authorities, who have enforcement power under Section 17 of the Governor’s Order.

WEDC is unable to advise local authorities on potential enforcement actions. We are also unable to answer questions from employees seeking guidance on whether they should report to work. We urge everyone to take the measures needed to keep everyone safe.


There is not a website to formally lodge complaints. People are directed to contact their local law enforcement.

Local police agencies have told Action 2 News they will investigate complaints and speak with employers. They would prefer to educate businesses rather than issue citations.