Governor Whitmer expands COVID-19 emergency declaration; declares ‘state of disaster’

Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-33, which recognizes the expanded scope of economic, educational, and civic dislocation caused by the COVID-19, and equips the administration to address fully the devastation caused by virus. The order also formally declares a state of disaster.

“Since Michigan announced our first confirmed cases of COVID-19 three weeks ago, we have taken some of the most aggressive measures in the country to mitigate the spread of the virus and protect Michigan families,” said Governor Whitmer. “Today’s action will allow my administration to respond more effectively to every facet of this crisis. During this time, it’s crucial that Michiganders continue to stay home and keep their distance from others. We will get through this together.”

“The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Michigan is still climbing, and we must continue to do everything we can to slow the spread,” said MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “The governor has taken a number of critical steps to protect Michigan families, and this order today will allow that work to continue. I will keep working closely with the governor and our partners across state government to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”

In addition to issuing Executive Order 2020-33, Governor Whitmer sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield requesting a concurrent resolution extending this declared state of emergency and disaster under Executive Order 20-33 by 70 days from the date of the resolution.

In the letter, the governor stated, “To meet the steep, varied, and ongoing demands created by the COVID-19 pandemic, my administration must continue to use the full range of tools available to protect the health, safety, and welfare of our state and its residents. I welcome you and your colleagues’ continued partnership in fighting this pandemic.”

While the governor has multiple independent powers to address the challenges Michigan now faces, the powers invoked by Executive Order 2020-33 provide important protections and should remain a part the state’s ongoing efforts to combat this pandemic. The individual emergency orders, including Executive Order 2020-21 (Stay Home, Stay Safe), expire at the time stated in each order, unless otherwise continued.

On March 10, 2020, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-4, which declared a state of emergency in Michigan to address the COVID-19 pandemic. In just three weeks, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Michigan has reached 9,334 confirmed cases. To date, 337 Michiganders have died from COVID-19.

The governor has taken a number of aggressive measure to protect Michigan families from the spread of the virus, including ordering businesses that are not critical to sustain or protect life to temporarily suspend in-person operations, and directing all Michiganders to stay in their homes, with limited exceptions.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.

To view Executive Order 2020-33 and the Governor’s request to the legislature to extend the declared state of emergency and disaster, click the links below:

Leave a Reply