GOV. POLIS: Safer At Home Is Not Life As Normal

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis speaks on Weds., April 29.

Colorado is now in the Safer At Home phase.

Wednesday, Gov. Jared Polis said Safer At Home is still not life as we know it or want it.

"It's not back to life as normal. We all wish it was but that's not where we are today."

The governor again said that people 65 years of age or older need to stay home as much as possible. Everyone needs to stay home whenever possible and wear a mask when out in public.

In many Metro-area counties, retailers are opening for curbside delivery this week with doors opening to the public on May 4.

Also on May 4, companies can ramp up to 50 percent capacity unless local orders are more restrictive.

"Bars, restaurants, gyms continue to be closed," the governor said. "We also want to continue to have no group larger than 10."

Earlier this week, Gov. Polis said he hoped bars and restaurants would be able to start reopening in mid-May.

And the governor reminded people that staying healthy is the priority. If you're not, please take the appropriate steps.

"It's important for every Coloradoan to know that if you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, remain at home and self-isolate," he said. "It's incredibly important. Your decision to do that could absolutely save the lives of your loved ones, your friends, your neighbors and your co-workers. We made provisions in Colorado law under Executive Order that you will get sick pay if you're unable to go to work for those four or five days and then if it's confirmed to be COVID, two weeks of pay because you have to stay at home. The more people stay at home when they're ill, the more we open quicker."

The governor read feedback from social media expressing frustration at how he and his Administration have handled the crisis.

TOPIC 1 - The Constitution matters. Protect the vulnerable. The numbers do not bear out this Safer At Home business. Open the state.

GOV. POLIS: "A lot of Coloradoans have that perspective and we are opening the state. Retail stores will be open; offices will be open. Doesn't mean people can run out to Rockies games, even if we let them occur which we're not. Major League Baseball is not ready to play. We want people to be responsible as there's a phased-in approach to more opportunities for Coloradoans to earn a living. It's very important that businesses follow those safety guidelines. Businesses always follow safety guidelines. If you got your hair cut in good times months ago, they have guidelines to follow. There are additional precautions they're going to be taking, including wearing masks, if you choose to get a haircut after they open on May 1 or May 8 in the Denver Metro area."

TOPIC 2 - There is no fair or just way to decide which businesses or activities are essential to someone else. That has been the problem all along. The things I do are essential to me. They may not be to someone else. The government has no right to pick and choose what business survives this but they are. It's disgusting.

GOV. POLIS: "No businesses were targeted or impacted based on what we think their value is to Coloradoans. Every transaction between two individuals who engage in a willing transaction benefits both parties. That's the nature of the market system that we live under. But they're some that are simply too dangerous, not because of what they are, but simply by being the nature of being a nightclub or a bar. It involves rapid socializing between dozens or hundreds of people together where one infection can lead to dozens or hundreds of infections. Some of those hundreds at that bar or nightclub might be the caregivers for their grandparents, might go on to give it to their elderly neighbors or at their church. It's all about what's safe. Nobody in government or anywhere else is trying to tell anybody what's essential and what's not. Everything you do is essential. Every Colorado consumer, every Colorado business, every Colorado worker is absolutely essential. It's about having, as a society, the social distancing that we need to avoid completely overwhelming our hospital system and having unnecessary loss of life, meaning people that contract the virus would survive with oxygen or a ventilator would die because there is not one there for him."

In his remarks on Wednesday, the governor said Coronavirus testing will ramp up even more this month during the Safer At Home phase.

"When the crisis began, we were only able to do 160 tests [per day]," Gov. Polis said. "Through making the process more efficient, through adding staffing, the lab capacity and our processing capacity has increased 20-fold in Colorado. We now have the We now have the private lab capacity to do well over 10,000 tests a day."

And the governor expects testing volume to increase throughout May.

"5,000 test a day [in] early May, up to 8,500 tests a day or more, if needed, by the end of May. What you'll see on average is 5,000-to-10,000 tests a day for the month of May."

He said that would include both the nasal swab test and the blood test.

The governor's full remarks are below.

4-29-20 Governor Jared Polis

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