January 13, 2021 – Advocacy News
On Wednesday, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) updated its Epidemic Order (“Order) to allow the restart of indoor group exercise classes and non-contact sports. The Order, however, keeps indoor dining at restaurants and bars shut down. It also continues to prohibit in-person work when work can be done from home and contact sports, except professional sports.
Michigan is now only one of three states with an indoor dining ban (Illinois and Washington being the other two states) and has already has the most days of statewide restaurant dining closure of any state in the nation, including the 58 days they have been shut down since November. The Chamber has voiced its support for safely reopening restaurants, and had hoped the Governor would make good on her commitment to try to reopen restaurants with restrictions prior to the expiration of the current Epidemic Order on Jan. 15, especially given the stabilization or declines in the three metrics the Governor has cited as critical for relaxing the Orders.
Unfortunately, the new Order continues to keep bars and restaurants closed for indoor dining. The Governor has said their “working plan” is to open indoor dining with mitigation measures, capacity limits and a curfew on February 1, but the ultimate decision depends on data continuing to stabilize. Additional details on their “reopening pathway” is expected next week.
The Governor’s office issued the following resources today: