The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) made changes to its epidemic order today (Dec. 18) to permit some indoor recreational activities where Michiganders can keep their masks on.
The update allows in-person learning at high schools and entry into indoor entertainment venues. Casinos, bowling centers and movie theatres will be able to reopen with total capacity of up to 100 people, but food and drink concessions will be closed, to ensure mask wearing at all times. Social distancing requirements will also be in place.
Continued from the previous order, gyms may remain open for individual exercise with strict safety measures. Also continued, employees who work in jobs that cannot be performed from home may continue to go to work, while employees who can work from home should continue to do so. Individualized activities with distancing and face masks are still permitted, such as retail shopping, public transit, haircuts (by appointment) and individualized exercise at a gym.
The order continues to temporarily ban indoor dining in bars and restaurants. Outdoor dining, carry-out and delivery are still permitted. Additionally, Colleges and universities will be allowed to have students return to campus for the winter semester.
The new order is effective Monday, Dec. 21, and will last through Friday, Jan. 15.
“These past few weeks, Michiganders across the state stepped up and did their part to slow the spread of COVID-19, and because of our collective hard work, we are now able to begin the steps to carefully lift some of the protocols we have in place,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement.
Whitmer added, “I am encouraged by the progress we have made since early November, and will continue to monitor the data closely during and after the holidays. One of the most important things Michiganders can do right now is make a plan to get the safe and effective vaccine as soon as it’s available to you. And as always: mask up, practice safe social distancing, and avoid indoor gatherings where COVID-19 can easily spread from person to person. We will eradicate this virus together.”