‘Free Ohio Now’ rallying across the state to encourage DeWine to loosen restrictions

Coronavirus

BROOKLYN, Ohio (WJW) — Free Ohio Now held rallies in 33 of Ohio’s 88 counties Saturday, including in Cuyahoga County, to express their opposition to the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

People in each county have organized the rallies to send a message to Governor Mike DeWine that they want Ohio to reopen fully.

Free Ohio Now argues that Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton has “made the cure for the coronavirus worse than the disease.”

The organization claims DeWine and Acton are “trampling” on their costituition rights, citing the following examples to support their claim:

  • Countless small businesses remain closed by state mandates
  • People are unemployed, uninsured and the economy is heading into recession
  • Parents may still be working, but their children are not in school or daycare
  • Unemployed, divorced parents are falling behind in child support payments
  • Rates of depression, suicide and alcohol/drug are rising as stay-at-home orders continue
  • Factories are only calling back some of their workers
  • Schools and universities are furloughing or laying off employees
  • City, county and state governments are seeing fiscal downturns
  • Elections aren’t being properly held
  • The food supply chain is strained and in jeopardy
  • Churches are closed

Free Ohio Now supporters also assert that as “Acton has indicated that 40 to 70 percent of Ohioans will get COVID-19 regardless of restrictions” it is no longer “reasonable or necessary” to keep Ohio closed.

Meanwhile, earlier this week Governor DeWine announced  reopening dates and protocols for several types of businesses.

Consumer, retail and services can open for business again on May 12. However, some are already operating via curbside service or by an appointment-only basis.

Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons and day spas can reopen on May 15. Clients may be asked to wait in their car for their appointments. Employees will be wearing masks and clients are asked to also don masks. In some cases, businesses can decide to make face coverings required.

Restaurants and bars can reopen to outdoor dining on May 15 and indoor dining May 21. Bars are included in those dates. Guidelines for restaurants focus on floor plans to maintain proper social distancing with barriers. Customers may be asked to wait in their car for a table. Most employees will wear masks, unless it risks their safety, like those who work the grill.

More on the Responsible RestartOhio plan here

Additionally, manufacturers, distributors, construction and general office environments were allowed to reopen on Monday, May 4.

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