Reopening Detroit: Mayor Mike Duggan lays out initial steps to restart city

Duggan outlines plan for city workers to get back on job after COVID-19 shutdown

DETROIT – With numbers showing the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is slowing in Michigan, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan started to lay out the initial steps to reopen the city.

Duggan said this is good news, but things are still going to be different for months to come, with people wearing masks and having their temperatures taken, for starters.

UPDATE -- April 28, 2020: Michigan coronavirus cases up to 39,262

“Today we’re announcing we’re bringing back our general services department,” Duggan said.

Some 200 city workers who maintain Detroit parks, the medians and other city properties are heading back on the job, Duggan said. He was joined by union leaders who made it clear they support the mayor and the efforts being taken to keep workers safe.

“Mr. Mayor, thank you,” a union representative said. “Let me just begin this by stating to you directly from a distance that in my many, many years of doing this, this is the finest example of a cooperative effort that I’ve seen in a long, long time.”

The goal of the administration and the union is to make sure workers are as safe at work as they would be at their homes, and the standards for city workers will be the same ones that Detroit insists private contractors use, Duggan said.

A negative COVID-19 test is required, as are daily masks, social distancing measures and a reduction in workplace density. There will also be a daily thermometer check, Duggan said.

“All of my department heads -- now every month we’re going to measure the infection rate of the employees and each of these departments,” Duggan said.

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Consistent sanitizing of vehicles and work places will also be a priority for months.

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