White House Cafeterias Closed After Employee Tests Positive For Coronavirus


The White House has temporarily closed two of its food premises after a cafeteria employee tested positive for the coronavirus.

A cafeteria in the New Executive Office Building and Ike’s Eatery in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building ― reportedly frequented by dozens of President Donald Trump’s West Wing aides ― were shut this week after the staffer’s positive diagnosis, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

“There is no reason for panic or alarm,” the White House told staff in an email, per CNN. The message noted how contract tracing had been carried out and there was no need for anyone else to self-quarantine.

It’s unclear when the premises, both run by contractors, will reopen.

“All proper protocols were in place by the vendor including masks, gloves, plastic shielding at check out, and no dine-in service,” a spokesperson for the General Services Administration, responsible for the maintenance of the buildings, told NBC News. “The White House Medical Unit has done contact tracing and determined that the risk of retransmission is low.”

Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary, Katie Waldman Miller, and a personal military valet for Trump both tested positive for COVID-19 in May.

Trump is tested for the coronavirus “probably on average” every two or three days, he said Tuesday.

Related: Coronavirus in the U.S.