Governor of Ohio, DeWine in a first-ever evening news conference about COVID-19 implored the residents of Ohio to wear a mask and take other steps to stop the spread of coronavirus amid a new surge of cases and hospitalizations in recent weeks but did not announce any new orders or mandates to enforce this pandemic. He said that more counties likely will be added to the state’s mandatory mask list and that a statewide requirement is possible. DeWine said he has watched warily the situation in Florida, where the number of new cases and deaths have surged in recent weeks. Florida has had a noteworthy increase and Gov. Ron DeSantis is letting the outbreak get out of control but he is attributing the rise to more testing among low-risk individuals.
Ohio might require masks
In the evening news conference, DeWine said, “If all of us do not take immediate action to slow this virus down, the tragedy that we see playing out on our television screens every day in Florida, Texas, Arizona, and California may well be our reality in just a matter of weeks.
The good news is that this nightmare does not have to be our future. Now, some have wondered what new health orders might be issued tonight. That’s a discussion for another time. As your governor, I will take whatever action is necessary to protect the people of this state. Our future truly lies in our own hands.
Ohioans have faced many challenges throughout time wars, floods, tornadoes, but really nothing quite like this since Gov. James Cox was our governor during the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918.”
The governor took the opportunity to praise the Ohioans and made a heartfelt appeal to Ohioans to take action themselves to stop the spread of the virus. But Northeast Ohio business owners, like Kim Shapiro, told that she is concerned the DeWine speech sets-up financial uncertainty. She also hopes that the speech isn’t a precursor to a partial business shutdown or rollback in the coming weeks.
And she said, “It’s hard, I was trying to explain to somebody else it’s like trying to do sales projections in quicksand, you have no idea what’s coming around the corner. It’s tough right now with the social distancing in place, we were never meant to survive and be profitable with 50% occupancy. Is he going to take some action may be sooner rather than later, which could mean a rollback?.”
The governor asked each and everyone leaving in the state to wear a mask every time when they go to the public.
There is a broad consensus today in the medical, health, and business communities that masks are critical. He also said that if the cases, hospitalizations, and deaths continue to go up then he would have to consider a lockdown that essentially would subtract five percentage points of the country’s gross domestic product. Along with wearing masks, he asked people to continue with social distancing and to limit public gatherings so that Ohioans can protect themselves and their loved ones.