After announcing that the state is making plans to begin reopening its economy on May 1, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has received criticism from some people who believe he "caved" in making that decision amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Asked at his daily press briefing on Friday about that notion, DeWine urged citizens to pay close attention to the actions the state is taking.
"I would just ask them to watch what I do and watch what the state does. And watch how we do this," DeWine said. "They have every right to think that what we're doing is wrong. But throughout this, we have been exceedingly mindful of human life and protecting the people of the state of Ohio."
DeWine continued: "Since the day I took office, that's been my No. 1 concern: How do I protect the people of the state of Ohio? It is the essential function of government, is to protect people and to do everything that we can to do that... for anybody who's concerned, just watch what we do."
DeWine went on to state that while Ohio wanted to put a date in place so that it can begin planning for the future, it's still paying attention to its daily numbers. And if those numbers dictate that Ohio should pull back from moving ahead with its plan, DeWine said the state won't be afraid to do just that.
As for how the state's economy will look different when it begins its slow reopening on May 1, details remain scarce. But DeWine did share a list of safety measures he expected reopened businesses to take, which he believes will likely be in place until a vaccine for the virus is available.
As of Friday, Ohio has had 9,107 positive coronavirus cases, including 2,424 hospitalizations, 740 ICU admissions and 418 deaths. Dating back to the discovery of Ohio's first positive coronavirus case on March 9, DeWine has put a number of measures in place to encourage physical distancing, including a stay-at-home order since March 23.