LANSING, Mich. (AP) – Governor Gretchen Whitmer on Friday extended home stay orders by Michigan a little more than two additional weeks, until June 12, while guarding theaters, gymnasiums and other public accommodation venues closed until at least that time.
A day after a judge decided in his favor in a lawsuit filed by the Republican-led Legislature, the Democratic governor also extended his coronavirus emergency declaration until June 19. Both home-based measures and emergencies have been set to expire the following Thursday night, although Whitmer said the possibility of extension.
“While the data shows that we are making progress, we have not yet come out of the forest. “If we will reduce the possibility of a second wave and continue to protect our neighbors and loved ones from the spread of this virus, we must continue to do our part while staying safer at home,” he said in a statement.
The state on Friday reported 5,158 confirmed deaths due to complications from COVID-19, which was number four most in any state. The daily death toll rose by 29 and the number of new cases confirmed in the country increased by 403, to nearly 54,000 since the pandemic began.
For most people, coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that disappear in two to three weeks. For some people, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, can cause more severe illness or death.
Whitmer announced directions to stay home extended to cover one week where he cleared the road next week for medical and dental procedures that had been postponed and allowed groups of up to 10 people to gather. Resellers can immediately reopen only by agreement.
Bars and restaurants remain closed to dining customers except in the Upper Peninsula and most of the northern Lower Peninsula, where they reopen at 12:01 am Friday morning with a 50% capacity.
“This is crazy. Why did you miss it?” Jon Mangrum told WPBN-TV as he waited to enter the bar in Traverse City on Thursday night. “It’s like a historical moment almost when everyone first returns when things are left open.”
Nolen Sleder, who owns Brady’s Bar in Traverse City, has a message for people who are thinking of traveling: Stay away from business.
“We deserve to feel safe and I want to keep my staff and customers as safe as possible, and I request that people from the lower states do not enter until they are quarantined or their area is also opened,” Sleder said.
Also Friday, the state Penitentiary Department finished testing all 38,000 COVID-19 prisoners with help from the Michigan National Guard. More than 3,200 tested positive and around 18,300 negative, with 16,500 test results pending. Sixty inmates died from this disease.
“When it comes to this virus, testing is very important to know exactly what you are dealing with and how to deal with it,” said agency director Heidi Washington. “Most of the detainees we found who tested positive had no symptoms and made it more difficult to control the spread of this disease.”
Associated Press writer Ed White in Detroit contributed to this report.
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