Welcome to my latest e-newsletter! Read on for legislative updates and information on my upcoming virtual event.
Upcoming Virtual Event
Come learn about recent changes to our auto insurance laws, your no-fault policy and get your questions answered by state experts. Join me and special guests Director Anita G. Fox from the Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS), State Senator Jim Ananich, and State Representatives Cherry, Mueller, Neeley and Sneller on June 15, from 1:30-2:30 p.m. You can join by visiting: tiny.cc/difsth2020. Hope to see you there!
Governor Whitmer recently lifted Michigan’s Safer at Home Order and moved the state into the next phases of the MI Safe Start Plan. In the coming days, retail business, some offices, day camps, swimming pools, outdoor fitness classes, libraries, and restaurants/bars may begin reopening as long as they adopt proper safety measures, practices, and trainings. These may include but are not limited to: implementing workplace infection-control practices, training employees to properly use personal protective equipment (PPE), informing workers on the steps they must take to notify their employers of any symptoms of COVID-19 or a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 and teaching workers how to report unsafe workplace conditions.
Outdoor social gatherings of up to 100 people are now allowed, but residents are encouraged to continue taking precautions to prevent a resurgence of COVID-19. Office work may also resume where remote work is not possible. On Thursday, June 4, retail stores reopened to serve customers without an appointment, but must continue following strict social distancing guidelines. Customers are still required to wear masks. On Monday, June 8, restaurants and bars reopened statewide with limited capacity while maintaining social distancing. Servers must wear masks and all other employees must follow rigorous disinfection protocols. Patrons are required to wear masks until they are seated at their table. Day camps and swimming pools can also begin reopening with limited capacity.
Hair, nail, tattoo, and massage businesses across the state of Michigan will be allowed to reopen on Monday, June 15. This executive order still allows for cities, villages, townships and other local entities to choose to take a more cautious course of re-engagement if they wish. For more information on Gov. Whitmer’s MI Safe Start Plan, click here.
Return to Learning Advisory Council
I am proud to announce that I have been appointed to the Return to Learning Advisory Council to help the state create a framework to safely, equitably and efficiently return Michigan students to in-person instruction in the fall. Our main priority is keeping both school staff and students healthy and safe as they transition back to in-person learning.
Teachers have been working tirelessly during these unprecedented times to make sure that all Michigan students continued to receive a quality education. They quickly adapted to the new normal; innovating, connecting with students and teaching in new ways. Teachers are anxious to get back to the classroom for the upcoming school year. This council will work to create many different options for whatever the future may bring.
Protecting Workers During COVID-19
On May 19, several colleagues and I introduced legislation that aims to protect workers and public health as Michigan begins to re-engage the economy. My bill (HB 5798) would require employers to obtain, publicly post and make readily available to employees a list of testing sites from their local public health department. Workers need to know when and where they can get tested as soon as they begin to experience symptoms or believe they may have been exposed to the virus. We only get one chance to transition back to the workplace in way that prevents a resurgence of positive cases; we must make sure that we get it right.
Downtown Business Coalition & Business of the Month
Small businesses help define the local economy and culture. When the COVID-19 crisis began, many of these businesses began to struggle. The Downtown Business Coalition (DBC) was created to explore different ways to support businesses during these trying times. The DBC recently concluded a virtual listening tour, which allowed nearly 200 small business owners to discuss the unique challenges they’re facing and give us their input on ways we can help them succeed.
As we begin to transition into a new normal, we must continue to recognize and uplift the businesses in our communities. Every month, I will be featuring a business within the 48th District that community members feel deserve the recognition and honor of being known as the “Business of the Month.” My office is currently collecting nominations for July, so if you own a business or know a business that should be acknowledged for their work in the community and their relationship with customers, please fill out your nominations using the form below and be on the lookout for the July business of the month!
To submit your business of the month nomination, click here.
The 2020 United States Census
If you have not done so already, please make sure to fill out the 2020 Census. The census results help to determine how billions of dollars in federal funding flow into states and communities each year. The census can shape many different aspects of your local community. Things like health clinics, fire departments, schools, even roads and highways can be changed by just answering 10 simple questions! You can respond to the census online by going here.
I hope you found this information useful. Please feel free to contact my office if we can be of any assistance.
State Rep. Sheryl Y. Kennedy
48th House District