Common-sense adjustments needed so people can return to work safely
State Rep. Ann Bollin said the governor moved in the wrong direction on Thursday when she put even more restrictions on Michigan workers while extending her stay-at-home order through April 30.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ordered that stores no longer sell what she considers non-essential items and block off those areas so customers cannot access them. The governor also said she will not follow the latest guidelines issued by the federal government’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) that would allow more Michiganders to safely return to work while following social distancing guidelines.
Bollin, of Brighton Township, agrees it is important for people to continue social distancing to stop the spread of COVID-19, but said rather than issuing more restrictions the governor should focus on making common-sense adjustments that allow people who can do their jobs safely to return to work and support their families.
“In updating her stay-at-home order, the governor had an opportunity to offer the people of Michigan some much-needed respite or a plan for when we might safely begin to return to normal life. Sadly, she decided to move us in the other direction,” Bollin said. “Certainly, I support the governor in her desire to protect the public against this pandemic. While the public’s health is a priority for all of us, we have an obligation to consider not only the public’s health but also the safety and welfare of our residents.
“We have spent the last three weeks living under an order with tight restrictions and without clarity. We were all asked to do our part to level the spread. And we did. We offered solutions to meet the social distancing and hygiene protocols and help our economy. The Governor said no. Nationally, the CISA guidelines were revised to provide clarity and offer options for certain services to be classified as essential. The Legislature requested their adoption at the state level to allow more Michiganders to safely return to work while following strict social distancing guidelines, but they were ignored.”
Bollin said the new CISA guidelines rightfully provide much broader exemptions for people who work in safe seasonal trades like lawn care, horticulture, construction and certain types of recreation.
“I think all Michiganders are essential,” Bollin said. “We are intelligent, hard-working, compassionate people. Rather than picking one essential job over another, let’s identify and evaluate how we all return safely to our normal, everyday life and our jobs.”
Rep. Bollin and her staff are working remotely, so they can continue to serve residents during the COVID-19 outbreak. People with questions or concerns can reach her office by calling (517) 373-1784 or emailing AnnBollin@house.mi.gov.