INDIANAPOLIS—On Friday, Governor Holcomb announced his plans to begin reopening Indiana’s economy. State Senate Democratic Leader Tim Lanane (D-Anderson) had the following response to the governor’s announcement:
“While I understand that Hoosiers and businesses are anxious to get back to work, it is extremely important that the reopening of our economy is done with the utmost of caution. As the Governor himself has said, the foremost guide must be safety first.
“After all the sacrifices those of us in Indiana have made, the last thing we want to do is open our economy prematurely and see a new wave of this virus as a result. Indiana is not out of the woods yet with COVID-19, and until Indiana starts to see a decrease in positive tests, it’s too soon to be reopening our state at the pace and in the manner described by the Governor. The key has to be the containment and decrease of the spread of the virus, not just whether we can treat those who continue to fall ill. Just because hospitals have the capacity to treat more patients, doesn’t mean the state should be creating them.
“Governor Holcomb promised to reopen Indiana’s economy slowly and with the guidance of data, science and medical expertise. I’m concerned his plan does not meet those expectations. The state will just start testing every person with symptoms next week. We have no idea how many more positives cases there will be. The CDC suggests a continuing downward trajectory of COVID-like symptoms as well as positive tests before increasing interactions between people. Yet, Indiana has seen an increase in the percentage of positive cases over the last few days.
“I realize the state has signed a contract for contact tracing, but those staff aren’t hired and trained yet. We shouldn’t open until we know where this virus is and where it could head next. Opening large malls, other workplaces and gatherings without that capacity is irresponsible, especially when the enforcement to ensure companies, businesses and Hoosiers are following safety measures is non-existent. We must have an enforcement mechanism, other than verbal warnings, to ensure businesses keep their employees safe. I cannot help but worry that the reopening of the state this widely, this early will likely lead to a resurgence of positive cases. I urge the Governor to re-think this approach and develop a more cautious plan to make sure we avoid any such resurgence.”