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‘People are fed up’: Michigan’s extended stay-at-home order draws criticism, protest

Protest planned for Wednesday

LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s extended stay-at-home order is generating negative feedback, including a protest planned for Wednesday.

“I just never in my life fathomed that I would live in a place where my government told me what I could and couldn’t buy at a store. It’s bizarre," said Matt Seely, of the Michigan Conservative Coalition.

The organization has planned a car rally in Lansing to protest the governor’s extended order. Whitmer signed the new order aimed at slowing the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) last week.

READ: Michigan extends ‘stay home’ order to April 30 -- What you need to know

Whitmer restated her concerns Monday about a lack of personal protection equipment and how Metro Detroit hospitals are operating at capacity.

“I want you to have your freedom. I want mine, too,” she said. “We will get to a place where we can be with our family and friends again.”

RELATED: What happens if you violate Michigan’s stay-at-home order?

Seely said protesters who participate in Wednesday’s rally are asked to stay in their vehicles to adhere to social distancing.

“We want to maintain social distancing, but just in numbers show that people are fed up. They are outraged by this order and just, it’s enough,” he said.

Whitmer said during a press conference that the Michigan Conservative Coalition is backed by the DeVos family. Whitmer decried the education secretary’s involvement in the protest, but Seely said the group has never received money from the DeVos family and said the governor is mistaken.

The DeVos family’s spokesperson released the following statement in response:

“Contrary to the governor’s statements, the DeVos family hasn’t spent a dime on this protest nor has it offered prior support to the organizing entity. The DeVos family, however, understands the frustration of fellow Michiganders as elements of the governor’s top-down approach appear to go beyond public safety. Michigan deserves competent governance, not baseless attacks.”

How COVID-19 Spreads

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • Spread is possible before people show symptoms. People who are not showing symptoms can still be carrying the virus and can still pass it on to other people.

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

Prevention & Treatment

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

Click here for more guidelines from the CDC.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.

Question about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge here.

Read more about coronavirus here.


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