AGENCIES, Washington: US President Donald Trump unveiled his administration’s plans to ease social distancing requirements. He discussed the issue and logistics with the nation’s governors. As impatience grows in some cities amongst Americans, the new guidelines are aimed at clearing the way for an easing of restrictions in areas with low transmission of the coronavirus, while maintaining the restrictions in hotspots.
According to Trump’s plans to ease lockdown restriction, he advised Governors on Thursday that they could begin reopening businesses, restaurants and other elements of daily life by May 1 or earlier if they wanted to.
In a change of mindset, Trump has abandoned his threat to use what he had claimed was his absolute authority to impose his will on them.
On a day when the US death toll from Covid-19 increased by more than 2,000 for a total over 30,000, Trump released a set of flexible non-binding guidelines that envisioned a slow return to work and school over weeks or months.
Based on each state’s conditions, the guidelines in effect guarantee that any restoration of normalcy will take place on a phased manner and not as a single order from Washington.
The latter aspect had caused anxiety for some of the Governors. “We are not opening all at once, but one careful step at a time,” Trump told media during a briefing at the White House.
The decision will encourage Republican governors of states in the South and West that have not been as hard hit by the pandemic to begin easing lockdown restrictions.
Trump has previously said that as many as 29 states could reopen soon, told governors on a conference call before his announcement that some of them were “in very, very good shape” and could move further and faster to resuming economic and social activities.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 16, 2020