A group of over 150 Minnesota businesses, called the ReOpen Minnesota Coalition, is planning to reopen this week in defiance of potential COVID-19 restrictions, if they are extended.
"At the end of the day, people just want to feed their families, care for their employees, provide for their communities," Teichroew told the outlet.
Under the group's initiative, local businesses are encouraged to "join the cause and commit to opening" by pledging to operate in spite of a possible extension of the lockdown order.
The coalition encourages patronage of these businesses, calling on customers to "go give them business, tip well, and continue supporting them in the coming weeks."
Businesses that are part of the coalition plan to operate with "reasonable restrictions," like wearing masks and running at reduced capacity, CBS reported.
Under Walz's lockdown order, business owners found to be in violation of its stipulations could face fines or even jail time.
"I get no happiness out of enforcing the order, but my duty to protect Minnesotans from the deadliest global pandemic in a century demands it," he said.
"It's not fair to the vast majority of businesses who are doing their part to stop the spread of COVID-19 and are complying with the executive order to let a handful who chose not to compete unfairly with them," Ellison added.
Teddy Tschann, a spokesman for Walz, told the outlet in a statement that "the overwhelming majority of restaurants and bars in Minnesota are doing their part to keep Minnesotans safe during this historic pandemic," and that Walz has taken steps to "to provide these businesses with immediate financial relief."
The coalition called Walz's order "arbitrary," and claimed that "the state's own data DOES NOT support any of the current lockdown."
"For those who want to say that these businesses are putting others at risk... we challenge you to show us from any science and data that the risk of going to a bar, or working out at a gym, or bowling 10 frames, or teaching a small dance class is any more dangerous than going to Walmart, walking through a crowded MOA, or spending two hours in a busy supermarket," the group said in a statement.
Some local hospitality businesses are opposed to actions that defy the restrictions.
Richard Dobransky, president of Morrissey Hospitality in St. Paul, which owns 11 restaurants, three hotels, and two event centers, told the Star Tribune that he believes it's better to stay closed until the threat of virus transmission is reduced.
"Why risk your license for short-term gain? So they make $400 in two days and then they have to close forever?" he said.
"We've all been hurt tremendously," he added. "Let's hunker down and reopen the best way."