Minnesota Covid-19 survey halted after crew members report racial slurs, state officers say

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“A door-to-door Covid-19 testing survey has been halted as a result of a number of incidents in outstate Minnesota of residents intimidating and shouting racial and ethnic slurs at state and federal public well being survey crew,” the Minnesota Division of Well being (MDH) tweeted Friday.

Eitzen is in southern Minnesota close to the Iowa boarder.

The Neighborhood Evaluation for Public Well being Emergency Response (CASPER) survey is “a voluntary, in-person survey to grasp the impact Covid-19 is having on Minnesota communities,” the MDH web site says.
“Most of the particular person incidents might maybe have been thought-about misunderstandings,” Dan Huff, assistant commissioner of MDH’s Well being Safety Bureau, advised CNN affiliate WCCO. “However over the previous week, a sample emerged the place the CASPER groups that included individuals of colour had been reporting extra incidents than groups that didn’t embody individuals of colour. Given the uncertainty of the scenario and the influence the incidents had on crew members, CDC determined to demobilize their subject workers.”
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Eitzen Mayor Jeff Adamson posted a prolonged rebuttal on his Fb web page Friday night saying his metropolis is “shocked by the accusations made in information reviews launched in the present day, and saddened to listen to our metropolis being slandered.”

In a prolonged assertion, Adamson mentioned his metropolis “on no account helps racism and violence,” and mentioned that on September 15 “a involved citizen” notified metropolis officers once they noticed a crew of three individuals in an out-of-state automobile, knocking on doorways “claiming to be conducting a Covid-19 survey and checks.”

“In a really small city the place everybody is aware of everybody, a gaggle of unfamiliar individuals with out-of-state plates is uncommon, and to some residents its trigger for concern,” he mentioned.

Adamson mentioned the Houston County Sheriff’s Division got here to evaluate the scenario within the presence of metropolis officers and two residents. The sheriff’s division confirmed the crew was a part of the MDH, he wrote.

Huff advised WCCO that the survey crew was confronted by three males, one in all whom was armed, and the crew felt intimidated.

“We wish to make it clear there was by no means a gun or any weapon current, and no threats or aggressive habits occurred throughout the interplay between town members and the Covid-19 crew,” Adamson mentioned.

It is potential the survey crew “misinterpreted a big fireplace division communication radio in a holster for a firearm,” Adamson mentioned in his submit.

On Saturday, the sheriff’s division advised CNN there was no one who might communicate on the matter and to strive again on Monday.

The mayor’s assertion didn’t tackle some other incidents that the well being division referred to.

CNN Well being reached out to the CDC, and has not heard again.



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