Local Medical Officer Of Health Defends Health Inspectors

Windsor's medical officer of health is defending the actions of a local health inspector who shut down an east end restaurant.

As AM800 News reported on Wednesday, Windsor city councillor Jo-Anne Gignac said she was contacted by the restaurant owner last month after his establishment was closed for a day and a half.

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Wajid Ahmed says health inspectors were just doing their jobs.

He says their job is the protection of the public and they can't allow a premise to operate if there are any safety concerns with the food.

In this case according to the "Food Premise Inspection Report," the restaurant was under renovations and there were concerns about dust getting into the food.

"Any deficiencies which is significant enough that can cause any harm to the health of the public, they are empowered to make a decision whether they want to close the restaurant or not."

Dr. Ahmed adds the owner was given instructions why the restaurant had to close.

"They close that restaurant and they give very clear and detailed instruction to the food premises owner what those deficiencies are and what they can do to re-open the restaurant."

The owner of the business wanted to know if he could appeal the decision and Gignac wanted clarification on the practice of shutting down a restaurant.

Dr. Ahmed says the decision is up to the one health inspector who visits the restaurant and the power lies with the inspector.  

He says health inspectors are trained professionals and it is impractical for the health unit to not rely on the job that the inspectors are trained to do.