Gov. Whitmer On ‘Stay At Home’ Order: Health Is Tied to Economy

“It would be much worse for our economy if our healthcare system crumbled,” Whitmer tells Stephen Henderson on Detroit Today.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has ordered all Michiganders to stay at home for at least three weeks.

Travel is banned, other than for essential reasons like getting groceries, fuel, or medicine. Employers must stop asking non-essential employees to come in for work.

See the full executive order here

“There have been experts who have said if everyone would just freeze in place for 14 days, this would come to a sputtering halt.” – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer

Michiganders are still trying to unpack what the order means for them and their lives, as well as whether their jobs, businesses, or reasons to travel fall into the “essential” category. 

Click on the player above to hear Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on the “Stay at Home, Stay Safe” order.

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The governor wants to draw a distinction between her “stay-at-home” order and a “shelter-in-place” order, which she tells Stephen Henderson, “has different connotations.” However, she acknowledges that people use the two interchangeably.

“Words matter” she says.

“Even with this order, we are going to see the numbers continue to go up for a while,” Whitmer says. “But, ultimately, the most important tool that we have is to keep people from communicating this to one other, and that means staying home.”

The governor says she’s well aware of the economic impacts of an order like this.

“I, believe me, have lost a lot of sleep over what this is going to mean for people’s livelihoods, what it’s going to mean for our ability to ramp our economy back up,” she says. “But the fact of the matter is it would be much worse for our economy if our healthcare system crumbled and if COVID-19 just continued to spread out of control.”


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    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.