Massachusetts and Connecticut join rest of US in lifting COVID-19 lockdowns

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Massachusetts and Connecticut join rest of US in lifting COVID-19 lockdowns

All 50 US states have now at least partially reopened after Massachusetts and Connecticut lifted some coronavirus lockdown measures this week.

Connecticut started lifting some restrictions on Wednesday in the first phase of Governor Ned Lamont’s plan to reopen the state.

The state will allow the reopening of outdoor dining areas, offices, retail shops and malls, museums and zoos, and outdoor recreation businesses – all with social distancing requirements.

The governor delayed the opening of hair salons, which had been expected to be part of Wednesday’s reopening, until early June.

Summer school and other educational programs operated by local or regional school boards may not begin until July 6, with some exceptions.

All 50 US states have now at least partially reopened after Massachusetts and Connecticut lifted some coronavirus lockdown measures this week

Connecticut started lifting some restrictions on Wednesday, including on restaurants, in the first phase of Governor Ned Lamont’s plan to reopen the state

The state will allow the reopening of outdoor dining areas, offices, retail shops and malls, museums and zoos, and outdoor recreation businesses – all with social distancing requirements

Meanwhile in neighboring Massachusetts, Governor Charlie Baker on Monday outlined a phased-in approach to gradually restart the state’s economy that shuttered nearly two months ago.

In the first phase beginning Monday, manufacturing and construction can reopen provided they follow standards meant to curb the spread of the virus. Houses of worship can resume services if they follow social distancing. Outdoor services are encouraged.

On May 25, lab and office spaces can reopen as well as hair salons, pet grooming and car wash locations. Retail business can do curbside pick-up. On June 1, office space can reopen in Boston.

Some recreation will also be allowed to restart May 25, including parks, drive-in theaters, some athletic fields and courts, most fishing and hunting, boating, gardens, and zoos.

Retail businesses, restaurants, hotels and other personal services, such as nail salons and day spas, can reopen as part of phase two. 

As the US states continue to loosen their coronavirus restrictions, it’s back to business, but not business as usual. 

In fact, it is becoming all too clear that without a vaccine against the scourge, the disruptions could be long-lasting and the economy won’t be bouncing right back. 

In Connecticut, restaurants that reopened on Wednesday for outdoor dining are required to rearrange workstations so that employees don’t face one another, and stagger shifts and break times to minimize contact among them. 

In Massachusetts, manufacturing and construction can reopen provided they follow standards meant to curb the spread of the virus

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In the first phase beginning Monday, manufacturing and construction can reopen provided they follow standards meant to curb the spread of the virus

Markers must be installed to encourage customers to keep their distance from one another. 

Some of new rules for dining out echo reopening guidelines released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They are intended for childcare centers, schools, day camps, mass transit systems, restaurants, bars and other businesses and organizations.  

For example, the CDC suggests mass transit systems close every other row of seats and limit how many riders can be on a bus or train.

Amid the wave of reopenings, many Americans remain wary, according to a new survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. 

The poll finds that 83% of Americans are at least somewhat concerned that lifting restrictions in their area will lead to additional infections.

Currently, there are more than 1.5 million infections in the US and over 92,000 deaths. 

With the virus far from vanquished, the reopenings could prove to be a stop-and-start, two-steps-forward-one-step-back process. 

A forecast from the University Of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School model, predicts nearly 4.3 million cases and 230,000 deaths by July 24 if states reopen but individuals don’t maintain their social distancing efforts.

Meanwhile, a separate model from the UMass Influenza Forecasting Center of Excellence is projecting that deaths will surpass 113,000 by mid-June.   

Here is a state-by-state breakdown of what’s open in each state: 

Alabama: Gyms and salons and barber shops can reopen if social distancing is adhered to. Restaurants and bars can reopen with limited seating. 

Alaska: Retail stores, restaurants and personal care services can open at 50% capacity. Religious services can also operate at 50% capacity. Fitness centers and bars are restricted to 25% capacity.

Arizona: Gyms, restaurants, retail stores and persona care businesses can all reopen. Major league sports can also resume without spectators. Bars and nightclubs still remain closed.

Arkansas: Restaurants, gyms and personal care can reopen. Bars can reopen from May 26. Theaters, casinos and stadiums can also reopen if limited to a 50 person capacity.

California: Low risk businesses like clothing stores, sporting goods and florists can resume with curbside pickup. Manufacturers can commence again with social distancing. Gyms, restaurants, bars and personal care services remain closed. Sports without spectators can recommence this month.

Colorado: Retail and personal care services can reopen. Restaurants and bars are still limited to takeout only.Large workplaces can reopen at 50% capacity.

Connecticut: Restaurants with outdoor seating, retail stores and offices can reopen at 50% capacity. Personal care services can reopen from June 1.

Delaware: Retail shops can offer curbside pick up but gyms, restaurants, bars and cinemas remain closed.

Florida: Retail stores, restaurants, gyms and personal care services can reopen. Sporting venues can resume without spectators. Bars, nightclubs and cinemas are still closed.

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Georgia: Gyms, personal care and restaurants can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain closed for now.

Hawaii: Shopping malls, car washes, pet grooming and in person retail can resume. Restaurants and bars remain closed. Beaches are only open for exercise.

Idaho: Restaurant, gyms, personal care businesses, retail and places of worship can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain shut.

Illinois: Retail stores are open for pickup and delivery and state parks are open for hiking and fishing. Gyms, restaurants, bars and personal care service are still shut.

Indiana: Retail stores, offices and places of worship can reopen. Restaurants and bars can operate at 50% capacity. Personal care services can reopen by appointment only. Gyms and outdoor recreational facilities remain closed.

Iowa: Gyms, restaurants, retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain closed.

Kansas: Gyms, restaurants, retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain closed.

Kentucky: Manufacturing, construction, car dealerships and professional services can resume at 50% capacity. Retail and houses of worship can also reopen. Personal care services can start again from May 25 and restaurants and bars will likely reopen in June.

Louisiana: Restaurants, gyms, personal care services and places of worship can reopen. Bars, retail stores and cinemas remain closed.

Maine: Personal care services can reopen, as well as retail and restuarants in rurual areas. Gyms can also now hold outdoor classes. Bars and retail stores in other parts of the state remain closed.

Maryland: Retail stores can reopen, while personal care services can reopen with appointments.Restaurants, bars, gyms and personal care services remain closed.

Massachusetts: Construction, manufacturing and places of worship can reopen. Gyms, bars, restaurants and personal care services remain closed.

Michigan: Businesses and restaurants in parts of the state can reopen at 50% capacity. Construction industry has reopened and retail stores can open for curbside pickup. Gyms and personal care businesses remain closed.

Minnesota: Retail and malls, industrial, manufacturing and office settings can reopen. Gyms, personal care services, restaurants and bars remain closed.

Mississippi: Gyms, restaurants, retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain closed.

Missouri: Gyms, restaurants, bars and nightclubs, retail stores and personal care services are open.

Montana: Schools, places of worship, restaurants, bars, retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen.

Nebraska: Restaurants, personal care businesses and places of worship can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain shut.

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Nevada: Retail stores, restaurants and personal care businesses can reopen at reduced capacity. Gyms, bars and nightclubs remain closed.

New Hampshire: Retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen. Restaurants can open for outdoor seating. Gyms, bars and nightclubs remain closed.

New Jersey: Gyms, restaurants, bars and nightclubs remain closed. Outdoor recreation including golf courses and parks are now open.

New Mexico: Retail stores can open but gyms, restaurants, bars and personal care services remain closed.

New York: Curbside retail and drive-in cinemas are allowed in parts of the state. Gyms, restaurants, personal care services and other retail stores remain closed.

North Carolina: Retail stores are open but gyms, restaurants, bars and personal care services remain closed.

North Dakota: Gyms, restaurants, retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain closed.

Ohio: Retail stores, restaurants and personal care businesses can reopen. Gyms, bars and nightclubs remain closed.

Oklahoma: Gyms, restaurants, bars, retails stores, personal care businesses and places of worship are open.

Oregon: Some retail stores, gyms, bars, restaurants and personal care businesses can reopen in parts of the state.

Pennsylvania: Retail stores can reopen in some parts of the state. Gyms, restaurants, bars and personal care businesses remain closed for now.

Rhode Island: Retail stores and outdoor restaurant dining can start again. Gyms, bars, nightclubs and personal care businesses can reopen.

South Carolina: Gyms, restaurants, retail stores and personal care businesses can reopen. Bars and nightclubs remain closed.

South Dakota: The state had no lockdown measures in place. Businesses have been advised to open their doors and take precautions to keep people spread apart.

Tennessee: Gyms, restaurants and personal care services can reopen but bars and nightclubs remain closed.

Texas: Retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters and malls can reopen at a 25%. In some parts of the state they can open at 50% capacity. Bars remain closed across the state.

Utah: Gyms, restaurants and personal care services can reopen.

Vermont: Retail businesses can reopen but gyms, restaurants, bars and personal care services remain closed.

Virginia: Restaurants and bars can open for outdoor dining only. Personal care services can also reopen and gyms remain closed.

Washington: Restaurants and curbside retail can reopen in parts of the state. Gyms, bars and personal care services remain closed.

West Virginia: Gyms can reopen and restaurants can offer outdoor dining. Personal care services are reopen by appointment only.

Wisconsin: Bars, restaurants, gyms, retail and personal care services can reopen.

Wyoming:  Restaurants, bars, gyms and personal care services can reopen.