Governor Walz announced last week that he and the governors of six other Midwestern states will coordinate to reopen the economies of the Midwest. Minnesota, along with Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, and Kentucky have current stay-at-home orders in place and are aligned in terms of how best to protect the citizens of their respective states.
This agreement was made in response to President Trump offering a set of guidelines on how to reopen America’s economies. Although some of the president’s guidelines align with those of the governors of the seven aforementioned states, the compact of the region’s states will better reflect the needs of the Midwest and will be data-driven and informed by science.
In addition to working together to recover the economy of the region, Governor Walz also expressed a desire to work with the other states to make testing and pandemic response more widely available and accessible.
Although there is no current timeline set in place, Minnesota and the other six states are in discussions with experts on how to safely open their economies in a way that protects citizens from the virus while also working towards recovering the economy.
The governors of these states gave four deciding factors that will play into their process:
- The states need consistent control of infection and hospitalization rates
- They must have enhanced testing and tracing
- Health care systems need to be able to handle a resurgence of the virus
- Workplaces must have best practices for social distancing
The economies of each individual state in this compact will not be opening at the same time. However, because the economies are so intertwined and reliant on each other, they will be working towards a game plan on how best to reopen on a tandem basis.