LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer held a news conference Thursday, where she announced the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) would fully lift its masking and gathering order, by July 1st.
The governor also said as of June 1st, all outdoor capacity restrictions will be lifted, and indoor establishments can start operating at 50% capacity. People who are not considered fully vaccinated will still have to wear a mask indoors.
“As Michiganders have stepped up to get vaccinated and the CDC has released new guidance on masks, we are adapting the MI Vacc to Normal challenge to keep up,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “Starting June 1st, we will be moving forward, faster than excepted, towards a return to normalcy. Soon, Michiganders will be able to celebrate together, have summer weddings and even enjoy a 4th of July barbeque with family and friends. This is what we have all been working so hard towards, and I am so grateful to every Michigander who continues to go above and beyond to keep themselves, their family, and our communities safe. Thanks to them, we can take these final steps towards a return to the normalcy and build our economy back stronger than ever.”
Whitmer says the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) would give an updated on work place rules as soon as Monday.
Speaker of the House Jason Wentworth today released the following statement on the governor’s changes to state COVID restrictions and limitations:
“I am glad there is finally a clear and growing consensus that Michigan can manage this pandemic and improve metrics across the board without taking away people’s paychecks, without holding children back for another year, and without cutting off critical state services. Now we are even making progress undoing the damage of previous restrictions. Let’s keep it going and roll back all remaining limitations on Michigan families.”
The governor was joined by:
- Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist
- Midland Mayor Maureen Donker
- Jim Fitterling, CEO and Chariman of Dow
- Matt Felan, Great Lakes Bay Region Alliance President
- Chris Mundhenk, President General Manager of Dow Diamond
“This pandemic has been so difficult for so many Michiganders. We’ve made incredible sacrifices for the good of public health and the safety of our friends, family, and communities,” said Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist. “This vaccine is helping our small businesses reopen their doors. It’s allowing our economy to come back stronger than ever and allows for a sense of normalcy to return for families across our state. I hope that this news is an added incentive for those on the fence about getting a vaccine. I will remain focused on encouraging every Michigander to make a vaccine appointment if they haven’t already. This is how we move forward, together.”
Today’s presser comes as 56.8% of those 16 years and older having a least one shot.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer wasted little time and implemented a new mask policy here last Friday following new guidance from the CDC for fully vaccinated Americans.
“For more than a year, we’ve been following the best data and science to slow the spread of COVID-19 and save lives,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “The vast majority of us have trusted the scientists and experts to keep us safe during the pandemic, and it has worked. With millions of Michiganders fully vaccinated, we can now safely and confidently take the next step to get back to normal. The message is clear: vaccines work to protect you and your loved ones. If you have not yet received your vaccine, now is the time to sign up. This pandemic has been one of the toughest challenges of our lifetimes, but we came together as a state to persevere. We have all been working incredibly hard toward getting back to some sense of normalcy, and today’s news makes all of that work worthwhile.”
Now comes word that she is itching to lift even more restrictions on businesses and individuals.
“We feel confident our state can begin taking even greater steps to get back to normal,” her offices reveals.
Many would be shocked if the governor followed the lead of the Ohio governor, who is set to remove all COVID restrictions on June 2 and their full vaccination rate is lower than Michigan’s. The governor did not consult with local health officials on accelerating these rollbacks, but when speaking to 6 News, Ingham County Health Director Linda Vail said, She’d “probably would have said if you can, slow it down.”