This week, Governor Walz announced agreements with the University of Minnesota the Mayo Clinic and Hennepin Healthcare to make available rapid, widespread testing of COVID-19. This will greatly increase the number of Minnesotans who can be tested – possibly up to as many as 20,000 each day.
We are grateful for the competent leadership of Governor Walz and the partnership of some of the best scientific and public health minds in the country and world. You can read more about this announcement here.
Stay at Home Order stays in effect until May 4, Distance Learning continues
This week, Governor Walz announced the continuation of the Stay at Home order until May 4, with ability for some Minnesotans to return to work. In addition, students will continue distance learning through the end of the school year. You can learn more about all the Governor’s Executive Orders here.
Executive Order 20-40 will allow 80,000-100,000 Minnesotans to return to work in industrial, manufacturing, and office settings on Monday, April 27.??
Prior to loosening restrictions for a given setting, businesses must:
- Create, share, and implement a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan that sets out the actions they are taking to ensure social distancing, worker hygiene, and facility cleaning and disinfection necessary to keep workers safe
- Engage in health screening of employees and ensure that sick employees stay home
- Continue to work from home whenever possible
Executive Order 20-41 continues distance learning through the end of the school year.
Climate Action Caucus celebrates 50th anniversary of Earth Day
As a proud member of the Minnesota House Climate Action Caucus (CAC), I joined with millions of Americans yesterday to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. We have made progress in the fight to preserve our precious environment, but we have more work to do.
Earlier this week, three of my CAC colleagues, Chair Patty Acomb, Rep. Frank Hornstein, and Rep. Jamie Long spoke with former Vice President Walter Mondale about Earth Day. Vice President Mondale was serving as one of our U.S. Senators when Congress established Earth Day in 1970. A recording of the conversation is available here.
Additional information about the Minnesota House Climate Action Caucus is available on the caucus’s website.
Committee Action this week
This week, Minnesota House Education Finance Committee, of which I am a member, approved advancement of the COVID-19 response legislation for hourly school workers. We also heard bills regarding expiring referendums and funding of full-service community schools.
The Early Childhood Division considered childcare assistance provider reimbursement rates and Head Start funding.
Video of the hearings will be available on House Public Information Services’ YouTube Channel
A reminder about steps we can all continue to take to stay healthy:
- COVID-19 primarily spreads by droplets. For your safety, the best thing to do is stay home. Even if healthy, stay home as much as is possible. If you must go out, stay at least six feet away from others.
- Wash your hands often and when you wash them, do so for 20 seconds before rinsing (that means singing Happy Birthday twice before rinsing).
- COVID-19 can also spread from surfaces to you, but only via mucous membranes. In other words, it can only infect you by going from your hands to your eyes, nose or mouth (it cannot infect you through your skin). Therefore, don’t touch your face. This is hard to stop doing (we are creatures of habit), so if you touch your face think about why and look to identify triggers. That will help you break the habit.
- If sick, stay home. If you are very sick (i.e. fever, cough, and shortness of breath) and you feel like you need to see someone, call first or do an e-visit. Do not just show up to your clinic, Urgent Care, or Emergency Dept. without notifying them first. This helps the clinic, Urgent Care, or Emergency Dept. prepare for you and helps avoid infecting others.
- When you cough, use your sleeve to cover your mouth and help prevent forming droplets that can infect others.
Please continue to reach out with any input, ideas, or feedback about the issues important to you. I value hearing from you, so please don’t hesitate to call or email me any time. You can also connect with me on Facebook here. It’s an honor to represent you at the State Capitol.
Laurie Pryor State Representative