Government of Yukon

FOR RELEASE     #10-117
June 21, 2010

Restaurant owners cautioned against fake inspections

WHITEHORSE – The Department of Health and Social Services is warning Yukon restaurant owners to watch out for individuals identifying themselves as health inspectors and trying to book inspections.

Four local restaurants have already received phone calls from individuals identifying themselves as health inspectors and advising that they would be conducting health inspections at a certain time in the coming days.

The Environmental Health Services branch is responsible for restaurant inspections and they do not schedule inspections in advance because they want to see the operation as it is on a typical day.

Eric Bergsma is the manager of the Environmental Health Services branch.

“We don’t give advance warning of inspections and we always carry government photo identification to confirm our identities to the owners,” Bergsma said. “The whole point of an inspection is to identify risks to the public, and work with owners and managers to make changes to the physical environment or food handling practices to reduce public risk. You can’t identify those risks if they know you’re coming.”

The four Whitehorse restaurant owners, who were called for the fake inspections, called the Environmental Health Services branch to verify the information. Owners were directed to contact police as similar cases have been reported recently in British Columbia and Ontario.

Owners and operators that get such a call should contact the police immediately and not give out any personal or business information.

Bergsma said restaurant operators can also check the identity of an inspector by calling the Environmental Health Services branch at 867-667-8390 or toll-free at 1-800-661-0408, extension 8390.


Pat Living
Communications, Health and Social Services