Bars, retail stores, and restaurants will partially reopen in 32 northern counties this week. Governor Whitmer’s new executive order goes into effect on Friday (5/22) at 12:01 A.M. There will be safety protocols for these businesses which include 50% capacity and employees wearing PPE. Please click here to read the full article and see a list of opened counties, as well as safety restrictions and other information.
The Michigan Secretary of State is sending applications to all Michigan voters to vote by mail for upcoming elections in August and November. “By mailing applications, we have ensured that no Michigander has to choose between their health and their right to vote,” said Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. Out of the 7.7 million registered Michigan voters, nearly 1.3 million are on the permanent absent voter list. The Michigan Department of State’s Bureau of Elections has ensured all remaining registered voters receive an application.
Local Catholics could begin returning to church today, although mass won’t begin at the Archdiocese of Detroit until May 29. The Archdiocese of Detroit issued guidelines for churches to return to service and Archbishop Allen Vigneron said your church experience may look a bit different. “The Mass you may attend in the weeks ahead will look and feel quite different from the Mass you remember from two months ago. It will be imperative for all of us to work together during these times.”
Thousands of Metro Detroit autoworkers were back on the job Monday (5/18). Strict safety measures are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The plants had less workers, and things were slower, however there were little complaints. Kenyatta Covington of UAW Local 140 said, “all the safety measures were awesome. They had actual thermometers in the ceiling, so when you walked through, it could take your temperature.” Click here to read more about autoworkers’ opinions as they head back to work.
Officials with the Airline Pilots Association said the guidelines and suggestions currently in place are not enough. They believe the FAA needs to mandate and enforce safety requirements. Troubling layoff projections in the airline industry for the fall are nearing 100,000 people, as most planes are currently only flying at 10% capacity. Issues such as making passengers wear masks and keeping the middle seat empty are a hot button. Eliminating the middle seats from airlines going forward could also raise ticket prices by at least 40%. The simple truth to a complex situation is that many Americans don’t feel safe to fly right now.
Anyone entering an Oakland County government building beginning May 26 will have their temperature checked and must wear a face mask. A gradual reopening of Oakland County operations is ramping up that were previously restricted due to the pandemic. County executive David Coulter said this about the new protocols, “We believe these policies and other steps we have taken will help keep visitors to our county buildings – and our employees – safe and healthy. Our team has worked very had evaluating each building, its public spaces and offices, to determine how we can best serve the public and our employees while maintaining appropriate social distancing and other health protocols.”
Massachusetts-based company Moderna has vaccinated 45 study participants so far and measured antibodies showing up in eight of them. While this is still the beginning stages of developing a vaccine, the results from Moderna are promising. The Chief Medical Officer for Moderna, Dr. Tal Zaks says, “this is really a very important step in the journey towards having a vaccine available for the people who need it the most.” The FDA has cleared Morderna to begin phase two trials. Phase two trials will most likely include hundreds of people. Moderna wants to begin phase 3 trials by mid-summer which will involve tens of thousands of individuals. Dr Zaks estimates that if everything goes well, the vaccine could be ready for the public as early as January 2021
Visit the Oakland County website to view updated numbers on how your area has been affected by COVID-19. You can search the interactive map by clicking on your location, or typing in your zip code. Recent data shows a total of 8,050 cases in the county, and 913 deaths. This makes only 7 new reported cases and 1 death within the county in the last 24 hours.
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