As the coronavirus continues to take a toll on our country, Missouri, like many other states, is seeing a growing number of daily confirmed cases of the virus. I believe this increase is a result, in part, of more people being tested for the virus. As we continue to learn more about this devastating pandemic, I believe it is critical we do everything we can to support the health care professionals who are working on the front lines to battle COVID-19.
In the meantime, communities throughout our state are issuing stay-at-home advisories to help slow the spread of the virus. According the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, every Missouri school district has cancelled classes until at least April 6. Despite physically closing their doors, many schools throughout our state are continuing to prepare and serve food to students in need. For the past week, the State Capitol and state office buildings have been closed to the public. While individuals might not have physical access to these buildings, countless state employees, as well as members of the Legislature and their staff, are working remotely to ensure the citizens of Missouri still have access to state services.
Last week, the governor also issued an executive order that allows restaurants to sell unprepared food without punishment. Because restaurants have had to close their doors to dine-in patrons, many restaurants now have an excess supply of food. Now, for the foreseeable future, these businesses can sell this food to the general public. I applaud this move. I believe It has the potential to help many businesses stay afloat during these difficult times, while also providing another option for the citizens of our state when it comes to shopping for food.
This has been a long road to travel, and it is not over yet. Let us keep up the fight and work together to come out of this crisis better people. May God continue to watch over us and protect us during these dark times.
As always, please feel free to call, email or write with your ideas or concerns. My Capitol office number is (573) 751-1415, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org and my mailing address is Room 332, State Capitol Building, Jefferson City, MO 65101.