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Coronavirus

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A top Ingham County Health official calls the situation “alarming.”

Monday, the county health department placed 21 Michigan State University fraternities and sororities under a mandatory quarantine for COVID-19.

In all, the Ingham County Health Department has identified 30 large houses in East Lansing with known exposure to the coronavirus. People living there have been ordered to quarantine for the next two weeks.  Residents of the quarantined properties are being told to remain at home unless they need medical care or necessities that cannot be delivered.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The state of Michigan will allow more families to visit loved ones in nursing homes and other residential facilities.

The state imposed restrictions on nursing home visits to stem the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan's nursing homes. About a third of the state's coronavirus fatalities have been among people in long-term care facilities.   

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Across Michigan, local clerks are preparing for the challenges of November’s general election.

The COVID-19 pandemic is driving a sharp rise in absentee voting and concerns for the health of people who will be manning the polls on Election Day.

Dustin Dwyer / Michigan Radio

Michigan colleges and universities have reported more than 930 COVID-19 cases since the start of August, according to publicly available numbers compiled by Michigan Radio.

That number is likely an undercount because many private universities do not post regular coronavirus updates on their public websites. One of the largest outbreaks in the state is at Adrian College, where college president Jeffrey Docking confirmed 131 positive cases as of last Monday. The Adrian Daily Telegraph reports the number rose to 200 cases by the end of last week, though the college hasn’t confirmed that total.

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This week, the Michigan Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments in a legal challenge to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s use of emergency powers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whitmer has faced numerous legal challenges to their use of emergency powers during the coronavirus outbreak. Just last month, the Michigan Court of Appeals sided with the governor in a lawsuit filed by Republican lawmakers.  

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Next week, the state unemployment agency should start distributing the first $300 in additional weekly aid to jobless Michiganders. The money is part of additional federal COVID-19 relief.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

State lawmakers are out with new nursing home legislation a day after a task force delivered its own recommendations for the industry.

Michigan’s nursing homes have been hard hit by COVID-19. Residents in care facilities account for about a third of Michigan’s COVID-19 deaths.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Some Detroit school teachers are not happy with a plan to return to the classroom this month during the COVID-19 pandemic. They took part in a car caravan protest on Monday.

Last month, members of the Detroit Federation of Teachers voted to authorize a “safety strike” if the Detroit Public Schools Community District didn’t “implement basic science-based safety protocols before schools reopen during the continuing coronavirus pandemic.”

nurse holding stethoscope checking heartbeat of elder patient
Rawpixel.com

Michigan’s Attorney General is warning the operators of senior living facilities against charging a special COVID-19 fee.

This week, the attorney general’s office sent out cease and desist notices to eleven senior facilities after receiving nearly 40 complaints from residents and family members about a special $900 fee.

rona4real.com (used with permission)

Soon you’re going to see Rona on billboards, hear Rona on the radio, and Rona will pop up on some of your favorite social media sites. Rona is a new ad campaign to get young adults to protect themselves from the coronavirus.

Rona – as in co-RONA-virus – is a red dot wearing sunglasses, described as a mischievous, malevolent character bent on infecting Michiganders who let down their guard. It has several arms that cannot quite reach six feet away.

The U.S. Justice Department is asking for data on COVID-19 nursing home deaths from Michigan and other states.

The agency says it’s evaluating whether to initiate investigations under the federal Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act (CRIPA), which protects the civil rights of persons in state-run nursing homes, among others.

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium
michigan.gov

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Friday extended her executive order declaring a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic through September 4.

“We are in a crucial time in our fight against COVID-19, and we must do everything we can to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and the brave men and women on the front lines of this crisis from a second wave,” says Whitmer.

Adobe Stock

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is extending the mask requirement to include children as young as two years old in some cases, after several coronavirus outbreaks linked to childcare centers and youth camps.

Gov. Whitmer says by requiring face coverings in her latest executive order, childcare centers and camps can remain open while keeping children and staff members safe.

Indiana Michigan football game
Creative Commons larrysphatpage

The Big Ten Wednesday became the first major college sports conference to announce its fall football schedule. But conference officials caution there is no certainty games will be played.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The Michigan Farm Bureau has some concerns about a state emergency order that agricultural and food processing workers get tested for COVID-19.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued an emergency order on Monday.

J. Kelly Brito / Unsplash

Some school districts have already announced they'll be offering remote instruction only in the fall, over concerns it is not safe for teachers, staff, students or their families to have in-person instruction, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A long table surrounded by red chairs in a school classroom.
BES Photos / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

School district leaders in Michigan say a package of online education bills making its way through the legislature sets requirements that are too rigid.

The bills are in anticipation of many students going to school online this fall because of the coronavirus pandemic.   

One of the bills requires districts to document a 75% average attendance record; otherwise some state funding will be cut. 

3D rendering of coronavirus
donfiore / Adobe Stock

A Gladwin summer camp has been closed after reporting a coronavirus outbreak.

The Springs Ministries summer camp in Gladwin closed last week after two members tested positive for coronavirus.

Now, according to a Gladwin county health official as many as 28 attendees have tested positive for the virus.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Flint’s mayor is decrying a Saturday night “pop-up party” that drew hundreds of people and ended with six wounded by gunfire.

Police had broken up two previous attempts to hold the event, which attracted up to a thousand people. 

Positive COVID-19 tests are affecting Michigan’s two largest college sports programs.

Michigan State University says all members of the East Lansing school’s football team will quarantine or isolate for 14 days. That's after a second staff member and one student-athlete tested positive for the virus on Thursday.

SHARI BERNSTEIN

This week a shopper in Meijer in Acme threatened an employee with a knife, upset he was told to wear a mask.

In Lansing, a man was stabbed and in May, a security guard at a Flint dollar store was shot to death.

Northern Michigan businesses say confrontations have increased recently, as customers unhappy with the mask policy harass workers tasked with enforcing the policy.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

If there is football played in the Big House this fall, most Wolverine fans will find themselves having to watch the games from home.

The University of Michigan Athletic Department announced its preliminary football ticket plans Wednesday. Under the ticket plan, students and current season ticket holders would be given the opportunity to purchase single game tickets.   There will be no tickets available for the general public.

But whether there will be games played remains a question.

Illustration of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Today on Stateside, summer school started for students in Detroit. We check in with the superintendent of schools in the city to find out how summer instruction will work, as well as the district’s plans for the fall. Also, a parent reflects on how systemic racism in the U.S. demands that Black children grow up far too fast. Plus, the COVID-19 virus image as an artifact of design.

Empty classroom
Kevin Wong / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

In just six to eight weeks, Michigan’s K - 12 students will be returning to school for the fall semester. 

Most districts appear to be planning for at least a limited number of days of in-person teaching.

But cases of COVID-19 are increasing in the state, and teachers are anxious about the risks for them, their students and their own families. 

WikiMedia commons / Brady-Handy Photograph Collection

Today on Stateside, we talk to an elder care researcher about the mental and physical health challenges seniors face during the pandemic. Also, Flint poet laureate Semaj Brown reads an essay she wrote on why she believes her alma mater, Cass Technical High School should be renamed.

Indiana Michigan football game
Creative Commons larrysphatpage

The Big Ten Conference won't play nonconference games in football or other sports this fall because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We are facing uncertain and unprecedented times, and the health, safety and wellness of our student-athletes, coaches, game officials, and others associated with our sports programs and campuses remain our number one priority,” says the Big Ten said in a statement.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Expect to see people collecting signatures soon on a petition to repeal the Michigan law that's given Governor Gretchen Whitmer broad emergency powers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Board of State Canvassers approved language for the petition Monday.

For the first time since the earliest days of the pandemic, Michigan reported no COVID-19 deaths on a single day on Sunday.

Since mid-March, not a day has gone by in Michigan without at least one death attributed to COVID-19. 

But the official state tally of coronavirus cases on Sunday contained no new deaths.

Since March, state health officials have confirmed 5,972 deaths linked to COVID-19.

Unsplash

The owners of nearly 150 locally-owed bars and restaurants in Michigan have signed on to a promise to meet or exceed all health recommendations during the pandemic.

The owners organized the promise after videos spread online showing some businesses ignoring the recommendations, and Governor Gretchen Whitmer ordered indoor bars in much of lower Michigan to once again shut down.

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