What Does Reopening Mean and How to Do It Safely During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Jalesa Campbell
Updated Jan 28, 2021
1 min read

One of the headlines in the news currently is reopening America, but what does that really mean?

While some cities and states have begun to move forward in the reopening process, other cities and government officials are pushing back, warning that taking steps forward too soon can lead to several steps back. Additionally, a number of Americans are protesting, urging their government officials to re-open businesses in their cities. Here’s a closer look at recent news and events and how this contributes to defining what reopening America means, as well as how you can act but in a safe manner.

States Are Reopening

While getting back normal – shopping in department stores, eating at restaurants, and attending events – is a goal of many Americans, the steps to get back to a state of normalcy haven’t been the most clear.

President Trump’s administration has given guidelines for states to follow for reopening, which says that “states should have a ‘downward trajectory’ of reported cases, or a falling share of positive tests, over a 14-day period before beginning a gradual reopening” (BBC News). But, a number of states have already begun this process without meeting the guidelines. More than 15 states are already in phase 1 of their reopening stages. Although the guidelines were given, the decision is totally up to each state.

Growing Discontent

While reopening ahead of government guidelines is a major concern, many Americans are growing more frustrated with government restrictions and urging officials for a return to normalcy. Some are going as far as protesting. Over Mother’s Day weekend, in Raleigh, NC, a group of armed protesters marched through the town (WRAL). More scenes like this are playing out in other parts of the nation. But as unrest grows in some American cities with mixed messaging perpetuated in the media, it’s still ever important to exercise caution.

Returning to Normalcy with Precaution

The CDC has released documents with guidelines to help businesses and organizations think through the re-opening process (CNN). In their guidelines, they address “child care programs; schools and day camps; communities of faith; employers with vulnerable workers; restaurants and bars; and mass transit administrators” (CNN). The documents released contain decision trees to help guide administrators and organizations in the reopening process.

As we make this transition – returning to work, businesses reopening, and events resuming – you can still follow these simple practices to help keep yourself and others safe:

COVID-19 Resource Center

Get the latest information about the Coronavirus and what you can do to stay safe.

Safety and Security Reporter

Jalesa Campbell

Jalesa is one of Safety.com's staff experts on home security, natural disasters, public safety, and family safety. She's been featured on Today.com and elsewhere.

Like what you've read?

Share it with your friends