Intervention: it’s not just a bad TV show, it’s a new type of restaurant inspection enforcement

Gee’s Garden Bistro, 1145 N. Alvernon Way, Tuscon, Arizona, failed an unannounced restaurant inspection July 17. And a re-inspection July 27; and Aug. 8 and Aug. 21.

So the Pima County Health Department tried a new strategy – intervention.

Sharon Browning, director of Pima County’s Consumer Health and Food Safety unit, told the Tucson Citizen that Gee’s is the first restaurant to go through the county’s intervention program, devised in 2002, stating,

"It’s not like a last resort, but it’s close. We’re trying to allow these people to stay open while they make significant changes, and it’s a tool that’s been in our toolbox, but one we’d never used until now."

The intervention period will include unannounced inspections at irregular intervals through January, at which point the restaurant could regain its regular license or have it revoked.