Are state re-open plans actually getting people back to work?
The OpentheStates movement is having a major impact, but the fight is far from over.
Over 2.5 million people have engaged with OpentheStates in our online forums and on social media, and over 100,000 Americans have signed OpentheStates petitions to our national and state officials
As a result, governors are starting to re-open their states for business.
But we need to keep up the pressure.
In many states, the re-open plan is nothing more than lip service. The standards are so high that residents won’t be able to get back to work for weeks, months, and even years.
Ballotpedia just released a new tool tracking each state's plan to re-open their economy, and we'll be watching it closely to see whether governors are actually adhering to the will of their constituents.
In some states, it doesn't look good.
In Wisconsin, Governor Tony Evers' "Badger Bounce Back" plan requires 14 days of continuously declining COVID-19-like symptomatic cases and a 14-day decline of flu-like illnesses before additional businesses can re-open.
In Virginia, Governor Ralph Northam has announced similar requirements as Wisconsin, but he's also extended business closures to May 8. Even though he's announced a so-called "plan" to get Virginians back to work, the state is still under a stay-at-home order until June 10. Virginia health officials have called the re-open plan a "two-year affair."
In Pennsylvania, Gov. Tom Wolf's office released a three-phase plan taking a regional approach to reopening. Criteria for reopening include "having fewer than 50 new confirmed cases per 100,000 population reported to the department in the previous 14 days," adequate testing capacity for symptomatic individuals and target populations, contact tracing capacity, and adequate safeguards in high-risk settings.
The re-open movement is working, but our work is far from over. We support social distancing, and we believe business owners and individuals have a responsibility to protect the vulnerable among us. But these governors need to understand that we won't tolerate fake re-open plans that aren't possible to implement in a timely manner.
That's why it's critical for all concerned Americans to get involved in their state. OpentheStates.com makes it easy. Simply click the red button below to get connected with the organization in your state working to get America back in business.