Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Tuesday that the state is not going to reimpose sweeping shutdowns amid rising coronavirus infections, saying that going again to lockdowns would cripple the financial system with out saving lives.
DeSantis drew the road at the same time as Texas Gov. Greg Abbott final week ordered all bars closed, and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey instructed residents to remain residence and declared that the state was “on pause.” Simply final week, after the state recorded 25,000 new infections in simply 5 days and 9,000 in at some point alone, Florida once again prohibited the on-premises consumption of alcohol at bars; there aren’t any restrictions on occupancy at gyms or shops.
“We’re not going back, closing things,” DeSantis instructed reporters. “I don’t think that that really is what’s driving it, people going to a business is not what’s driving it. I think when you see the younger folks, I think a lot of it is more just social interactions, so that’s natural. Obviously, you had a lot of different activities going on in different parts of the state. … So that’s just the reality.”
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Protests across the nation, and in Florida, have seen a dramatic decline in social distancing in current weeks. Whereas data show that infections in Florida outpace new testing, the numbers additionally point out that lots of the newly contaminated are younger and usually are not changing into critically in poor health.
DeSantis added that doomsday predictions about Florida’s coronavirus numbers had been off-base, and urged younger residents to “protect the vulnerable” by socially distancing and steering away from the aged — stopping in need of other governors, who’ve prompt residents ought to typically keep residence.
“We’re open, we know who we need to protect, most of the folks in those younger demographics, although we want them to be mindful of what’s going on, are just simply much much less at risk than the folks who are in those older age groups,” DeSantis added.
Earlier this month, DeSantis adopted a special posture, telling constituents that the worst was over.
“In our phase two, we will be going with bars being able to operate consistent with this guidance diminished standing room occupancy so basically outdoor seating with social distance, a certain amount indoors, but you’re seated to get served. I mean … go enjoy. Have a drink. It’s fine,” DeSantis said. “We want to kind of not have huge crowds piling in.”
On the identical time, DeSantis has issued a stark warning to companies that defy the state’s social distancing tips, threatening to revoke enterprise licenses from bars and eating places.
“If you go in and it’s just mayhem, like ‘Dance Party USA’ and it’s packed to the rafters, that’s just cut-and-dry and that’s not just an innocent mistake,” DeSantis mentioned.
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As Florida’s reported circumstances spiked to file highs the previous two weeks, although, DeSantis’ administration ordered bars to basically shut down once more. Officers in New York and New Jersey have additionally debated slowing their reopenings in consequence.
That transfer despatched Kylie Davis, a 23-year-old bartender in Tampa, Fla., again to unemployment. She had returned to work Could 23 after two months and not using a job, struggling to gather unemployment advantages from Florida’s backlogged system. The ideas, she mentioned, had been good.
“People were so understanding,” she mentioned, “that we had been out of work for a while and were extremely generous.”
But after a number of weeks, Davis was coughing and exhausted and had misplaced her sense of style and odor. On June 12, she examined constructive for the virus and couldn’t return to work when Florida bars reopened.
The jarring reversal underscores what many economists had been stressing for months: That the financial system and the job market can’t regain their well being till enterprise shutdowns have lasted lengthy sufficient to cut back infections and most People really feel assured sufficient to return to eating places, bars, motels, buying malls and airports.
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“It is the virus, not lockdowns, that dictates the course of the economy,” mentioned Yongseok Shin, an economist at Washington College and a analysis fellow on the Federal Reserve Financial institution of St. Louis. “We can not have a full financial restoration with out reining within the epidemic.”
The Related Press contributed to this report.