Busy week of Michigan COVID news: Whitmer’s restaurant photo, new restrictions, returning to work
There’s been a lot of news surrounding COVID-19 in Michigan over the past week, from a picture of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer violating restrictions at a restaurant, a brand-new reopening timeline and people returning to work.
State’s plan to reopen Michigan brings hope to struggling businesses
“We can all throw some burgers on the grill, catch a Tigers game and hit the lake with our friends. We can enjoy our Michigan summer,” said Willpower Fitness Group owner William McCray. “I’m happy, I’m ecstatic and I think we’re moving in the right direction.”
Michigan restaurants cautious but optimistic about vaccination-based reopening plan
Michigan restaurants have been put through the ringer throughout the pandemic. The industry as a whole has seen the rules change multiple times over the past year and that’s made for a lot of anxiety, frustration and sometimes animosity. After Thursday’s announcement, there was a new, more hopeful tone.
Whitmer announces Michigan will ease specific COVID restrictions as 4 vaccination goals are reached
Michigan is outlining four specific vaccination goals that, once they are reached, will directly trigger the loosening of certain COVID-19 restrictions across the state, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer revealed.
Why Whitmer says Michigan’s low COVID rates early in pandemic are contributing to current spike
When asked why Michigan has such a high number of COVID-19 cases despite all the previous shutdowns and restrictions, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said she believes the state’s success at fighting the virus early in the pandemic is actually contributing to the current alarming metrics.
13 takeaways from Whitmer’s COVID update: Michigan restrictions, why numbers are so high, vaccines
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer held a briefing Wednesday to update the COVID-19 situation in Michigan, addressing possible new restrictions, why the state’s numbers are so high, what’s going on with vaccines and much more.
Everything you should know before Michigan Gov. Whitmer’s second COVID briefing this week
Gretchen Whitmer will provide an update on Michigan’s handling of COVID-19 on Friday -- the second briefing in three days. Here’s everything you should know about COVID-19 in Michigan before it begins. Public schools in Michigan were shut down during the fall due to a surge in COVID-19 cases. Their buildings have been closed for about two months -- since the state reported thousands of COVID-19 cases per day in November. “The state of Michigan recorded our 500,000th confirmed case,” Whitmer said Wednesday.
Michigan’s updated COVID-19 metrics show ‘slowing of progress we were making’
LANSING, Mich. – After weeks of moving in the right direction, Michigan’s most critical COVID-19 metrics suggest a “slowing of progress,” according to the state’s top health official. Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, updated the state’s top three COVID-19 metrics during Gov. Whitmer’s COVID briefingMichigan’s case rate is now at 237 COVID-19 per million people, according to Khladun. The case rate had been on a clear decline for 46 days, but has started to plateau, Khaldun said. Despite that long stretch of decline, the case rate is still much higher than medical experts hoped.
Here are the 9 groups of people included in new phase of COVID vaccinations in Michigan
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan is moving to a new phase of COVID-19 vaccinations next week, and the residents included in this round of vaccines have been determined by age and occupation. Here are the nine groups of people included in the new phase:Residents age 65 years and olderPolice officersFirst respondersFrontline state workersFrontline federal workersJail staff membersPrison staff membersPre-K through 12th grade teachersChildcare providers“The state is entering a new phase in our vaccinations,” Gov. Whitmer’s COVID briefing“The more people we can get the safe and effective vaccine, the faster we can return to a sense of normalcy,” Whitmer said. Vaccines in Michigan are limited, so appointments will be, too. As more vaccines arrive, the state will be able to move more quickly through the priority groups, Whitmer said.
New, mutated variant of COVID-19 ‘very likely already here’ in Michigan, top health official says
LANSING, Mich. – The top health official in Michigan said a new, mutated variant of COVID-19 that might be easier to spread is “very likely” already in the state. Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, spoke about the new variant of COVID-19 during Gov. Concern about this mutated form of COVID-19 comes as Michigan reports less promising metrics than in weeks past. After 46 days of decline, Michigan’s case rate has started to plateau, and is currently at 237 COVID-19 cases per million people statewide, Khaldun said. On Wednesday, Michigan reported 4,326 new COVID-19 cases and 51 additional deaths, bringing the state totals to 508,736 confirmed cases and 12,918 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
Whitmer on Michigan COVID restrictions: ‘I think it’s very clear the pause has worked’
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan has been under tighter COVID-19 restrictions for more than seven weeks, and Gov. “I think it’s very clear that the pause has worked,” Whitmer said. Officials revised the restrictions Dec. 18 and extended them until Jan. 15. Click here to read a full timeline of this order, with a breakdown of how COVID-19 numbers have actually changed while it’s been in effect. Whitmer didn’t reveal whether the state would strengthen or extend the restrictions, but reiterated that she thinks it was the right move by MDHHS.
Are new COVID-19 restrictions in store for Michigan due to new variant of virus, metrics concerns?
LANSING, Mich. – With rising concerns about Michigan’s COVID-19 metrics and a new variant of the virus, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was asked if she anticipates new restrictions on activity in the state. In addition to some concerning trends in the metrics, Whitmer and Khaldun both spoke about a new variant of COVID-19, which could be even easier to spread. Whitmer was asked if, due to those concerns, the state will see increased restrictions beyond the current MDHHS order. When numbers started to improve officials eased some restrictions, allowing certain facilities to reopen and resuming in-person classes for high schoolers.
6 takeaways from Whitmer’s COVID briefing: Michigan’s restrictions, metrics concerns, vaccines
New phase of vaccinationsMichigan is moving on to a new phase of COVID-19 vaccinations, including teachers, first responders, childcare providers and residents over 65 years old. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced the new phase of vaccinations will begin Monday (Jan. 11). Concerning metricsDr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive for MDHHS, updated the state’s top three COVID-19 metrics, and cited some concerning trends. Michigan is at 237 COVID-19 cases per million people statewide, from 198 cases per million in the Traverse City Region to 342 cases per million in the Jackson Region. Michigan goes over 500,000 casesOn Monday, Michigan eclipsed the 500,000 mark in terms of confirmed COVID-19 cases.
Michigan high schools allowed to reopen today as part of revised COVID order
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan high schools are allowed to resume in-person learning on Monday as a part of Michigan’s revised COVID-19 order issued before the holiday break in December. Indoor venues where people can remain masked and socially distanced -- movie theaters, stadiums, bowling alleys, casinos -- can reopen without food or drink concessions. READ: COVID-19 restrictions stay the same for Michigan restaurants as other venues prepare to reopenTotal capacity at those indoor venues will be capped at 100. MDHHS continues to urge families to avoid indoor gatherings or to pick a single other household to interact with. And as always: mask up, practice safe social distancing, and avoid indoor gatherings where COVID-19 can easily spread from person to person.
Looking back at 110 stories that define Gov. Whitmer’s handling of COVID-19 in Michigan this year
In promulgating Executive Order 2020-69 and Executive Order 2020-70, the Governor has done just that by placing restrictions on certain activities to limit social interactions. “Good news, sports fans: We are now ready to gradually and safely allow professional sports to resume in Michigan,” Whitmer said. July 14: State of emergency extendedWhitmer extended the Michigan state of emergency until Aug. 11 as COVID-19 cases rose across the state. The five-year lending, investment and philanthropic plan aimed to help improve financial opportunities for Michigan businesses, consumers and communities. Dec. 29: Relief bill, unemployment extensionWhitmer signed a $106 million relief bill and also extended COVID-19 unemployment benefits through March 2021.
Michigan movie theaters, casinos, bowling alleys to reopen Monday
MORE: Here’s everything that’s reopening under Michigan’s revised COVID-19 order“I think this is a glass half full situation,” said Emagine Entertainment’s Chairman and co-founder, Paul Glantz. After weeks of having to abruptly shut down, Emagine theaters -- along with other businesses -- will finally be able to reopen its doors. “Now we’re not allowed to offer our guests food and beverage items, so there will be no concession sales,” Glantz said. And until then his business will continue to follow and practice the procedures necessary to keep movie goers safe. When will Michigan restaurants be allowed to reopen after the most recent shutdown due to COVID-19?
Lake Orion restaurant opens indoor dining despite COVID-19 restrictions
LAKE ORION, Mich. – Michigan has loosened COVID-19 restrictions for several indoor venues, including casinos, bowling alleys and movie theaters, but indoor dining at restaurants is still not allowed. “There will not be changes for highest risk settings of indoor bars and dining where masks are necessarily removed,” Gordon said. Gretchen Whitmer laid out the science behind the ban in November, where she cited multiple studies that showed an increase in the spread of COVID-19 and indoor dining. “It’s not the restaurant’s fault. “If you feel comfortable coming in here, who are you do say no when you can go to all these other places?” Luchkovitc said.
Gov. Whitmer slams vaccine distribution, plans high school to return to in-person learning
Gretchen Whitmer announced the state is revising its COVID-19 order to resume in-person high school classes, reopen certain indoor entertainment venues and allow non-contact outdoor sports and fitness classes. After her friend Wayne County sheriff Benny Napoleon died from COVID-19, Whitmer said when it comes the vaccine distribution is bottlenecked due to Washington. “My frustration level is high because in Portage there are vaccines ready to be distributed,” Whitmer said. In person learning at high school can resume. However, restaurants and bars will remain closed since patrons need to remove masks to eat or drink.
Michigan Republicans ‘condemn’ decision to keep many businesses closed through holidays
LANSING, Mich. – Minutes after the state announced updated COVID-19 restrictions, Michigan Republicans released a statement “condemning” the decision to keep many businesses closed through the holidays. Michigan Gov. While some indoor venues where people can wear masks and maintain social distancing will be allowed to reopen, other parts of the economy -- most notably indoor dining at restaurants -- are still banned. READ: COVID-19 restrictions stay the same for Michigan restaurants as other venues prepare to reopen“I am happy to see that Gov. However, officials would be willing to consider lifting more restrictions before Jan. 15 if Michigan makes enough progress, Whitmer said.
COVID-19 restrictions stay the same for Michigan restaurants as other venues prepare to reopen
(Photo by Richard Bord/Getty Images)LANSING, Mich. – Michigan has loosened COVID-19 restrictions for several indoor venues, including casinos, bowling alleys and movie theaters, but indoor dining at restaurants is still not allowed. In fact, the updated order from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services didn’t change the restrictions on restaurants at all. FROM TUESDAY: When could Michigan restaurants reopen? “There will not be changes for highest risk settings of indoor bars and dining where masks are necessarily removed,” Gordon said. Since dining at restaurants requires people from different households to remove their masks in the same area, it’s inherently risky, Gordon and Gov.
Here’s everything that’s reopening under Michigan’s revised COVID-19 order
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan updated its COVID-19 restrictions Friday, reopening certain parts of the state as metrics across the state improve. Gretchen Whitmer said the state would consider lifting protocols sooner if the state makes substantial progress toward slowing the spread of COVID-19. Here’s a look at what’s reopening:Indoor venuesCertain indoor venues where people can remain masked and socially distanced can reopen without food or drink concessions. Total capacity at those indoor venues will be capped at 100. MDHHS continues to urge families to avoid indoor gatherings or to pick a single other household to interact with.
Michigan revises COVID-19 order to reopen high schools, some entertainment venues
Gretchen Whitmer announced the state is revising its COVID-19 order to resume in-person high school classes, reopen certain indoor entertainment venues and allow non-contact outdoor sports and fitness classes. Indoor venues where people can remain masked and socially distanced -- movie theaters, stadiums, bowling alleys, casinos -- can reopen without food or drink concessions. READ: COVID-19 restrictions stay the same for Michigan restaurants as other venues prepare to reopenTotal capacity at those indoor venues will be capped at 100. MDHHS continues to urge families to avoid indoor gatherings or to pick a single other household to interact with. And as always: mask up, practice safe social distancing, and avoid indoor gatherings where COVID-19 can easily spread from person to person.
Everything you should know about COVID-19 in Michigan on Friday (Dec. 18)
UPDATE: Michigan revises COVID-19 order to reopen high schools, some entertainment venuesREFRESHER: 9 major takeaways from Whitmer’s last COVID-19 briefing (Tuesday)Click here to watch Whitmer’s Friday briefing live. Since winter has arrived, most Michigan restaurants aren’t able to serve customers in any sit-down capacity. Vaccine movementThe first group of Michigan health care workers received their first doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on Monday. Most recent numbersMichigan reported 4,024 new COVID-19 cases and 190 additional deaths Thursday, including 125 deaths from a Vital Records review. More storiesHere’s the complete coverage from Tuesday’s COVID-19 briefing:
Live stream: Gov. Whitmer provides update on Michigan’s response to COVID-19
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer provided an update Friday on the state’s response to COVID-19. UPDATE: Michigan revises COVID-19 order to reopen high schools, some entertainment venuesThe state has been under a “pause” that placed stricter COVID-19 regulations on restaurants, schools and more, but that order is scheduled to expire Sunday (Dec. 20). You can watch the full briefing in the video posted above. On Friday, Whitmer was be joined by Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, the chief medical executive for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, as well as MDHHS Director Robert Gordon.
Live at 6 p.m.: Gov. Whitmer makes announcement regarding COVID-19 in Michigan
Gretchen Whitmer is set to make an announcement Sunday evening regarding the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan. Whitmer will be joined by Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, the chief medical executive of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and MDHHS Director Robert Gordon. The announcement pertains to the state’s efforts to slow the spread of the virus, state officials said. On Saturday, Michigan reported 7,072 new COVID-19 cases and 65 additional deaths, bringing the state totals up to 251,813 cases and 7,994 deaths since the start of the pandemic. Michigan reported a single-day record 8,516 new cases Friday.