Gov. Whitmer and Midwest governors working together to 're-open' economy

Posted at 2:36 PM, Apr 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-19 18:43:57-04

LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) — The governors of Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky said they will work in "close coordination" to re-open the economy in the Midwest.

Gretchen Whitmer, Mike DeWine, Tony Evers, Tim Walz, JB Pritzker, Eric Holcomb and Andy Beshear jointly made the announcement.

"We are doing everything we can to protect the people of our states and slow the spread of COVID-19, and we are eager to work together to mitigate the economic crisis this virus has caused in our region. Here in the Midwest, we are bound by our commitment to our people and the community. We recognize that our economies are all reliant on each other, and we must work together to safely re-open them so hardworking people can get back to work and businesses can get back on their feet.

Today, we are announcing that Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky will work in close coordination to re-open our economies in a way that prioritizes our workers’ health. We look forward to working with experts and taking a fact-based, data-driven approach to re-opening our economy in a way that protect families from the spread of COVID-19.

Our number one priority when analyzing when best to re-open our economy is the health and safety of our citizens. We will make decisions based on facts, science and recommendations from experts in health care, business, labor and education.

We will closely examine at least these four factors when determining when best to re-open our economy:

  • Sustained control of the rate of new infections and hospitalizations
  • Enhanced ability to test and trace
  • Sufficient health care capacity to handle resurgence
  • And best practices for social distancing in the workplace

Phasing in sectors of our economy will be most effective when we work together as a region. This doesn’t mean our economy will re-open all at once or that every state will take the same steps at the same time. But close coordination will ensure we get this right. Over time, people will go back to work, restaurants will re-open and things will go back to normal. We look forward to working together as one region to tackle this challenge together.”