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State business leaders call on Legislature for unified, sustained response to COVID-19

ozens of business leaders and organizations in the state – signing an open letter to lawmakers...
ozens of business leaders and organizations in the state – signing an open letter to lawmakers and Governor Gretchen Whitmer – calling for a sustained and unified response to COVID-19.(WJRT)
Published: Oct. 22, 2020 at 6:00 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - Dozens of business leaders and organizations in the state have signed an open letter to lawmakers and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer calling for a sustained and unified response to COVID-19.

That letter urges collective action, not litigation to help mitigate the spread of the virus.

Three weeks ago, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled Whitmer’s use of emergency powers to help control the pandemic was unconstitutional. Now, Michigan’s business leaders from all sectors are weighing in in a letter to lawmakers, urging them to come together to help fight COVID-19.

In that letter, it states “what we need most is complete unity of purpose and a strong collective response from our state.”

“We are fully in support of this. It’s time to quit playing politics,” said Steve Dawes, UAW Region 1D president.

The UAW is one of more than two dozen businesses and organizations requesting that Whitmer’s public health and safety orders remain in place without being challenged in court or by the legislature.

The letter goes on to say Michigan needs clearly defined mandatory standards which govern mask usage, workplace practices, public gatherings and certain social activities.

Jeff Ryeson owns E.G. Nick’s in Lapeer.

“How long do we keep this stranglehold on our businesses,” he said.

Though he didn’t sign that letter, he feels like he’s been left in the dust, trying to figure out how to run his business safely on his own.

“The governor did this. The Supreme court overturned that. Now you have health and human services has their guidelines, but what’s enforceable? What’s not? What are we supposed to do,” he said.

Business leaders also said Michigan cannot afford the recent case surge to evolve into an uncontrolled outbreak similar to what’s happening in Wisconsin.

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