Last week I posted a video from a local coach, advocating for the return of winter sports and urging the governor and MDHHS to lift the current ban on the 2021 season.
Later in the week I received a letter from the Van Buren County superintendents with the same plea for the governor and MDHHS, urging them to reconsider the current ban on winter sports. I wholeheartedly agree with lifting the ban immediately and support our local schools in this matter. After reviewing the data and witnessing firsthand with my own kids how well the MHSAA ran the fall sports seasons, I have full confidence they can continue to operate winter sports safely.
For nearly a year the governor has tried to justify her unilateral policy decisions by emphasizing the need to respond quickly to this pandemic. I share your frustration as we see our state consistently falling behind the curve due to slow decision making. This past Monday, we were one of the last states to reopen our restaurants for dine-in. Now, we are one of the only states in the country that has a ban on winter sports without a scheduled start date.
I have publicly voiced my disdain for the excruciatingly slow reopening of our restaurants, and to now keep our children/sports programs in the dark is unacceptable. Further, the publicly available data we have supports allowing winter sports to begin immediately. Two weeks ago, we saw the successful conclusion of the high school football season. Over 98% of tests conducted on high school football players - the sport with arguably the most contact - came back negative. That number goes up to over 99% for fall sports in general. Looking at that data and the effective protocols in place, there is no sense in delaying our winter sports a day further.
Governor Whitmer and Director Hertel: LET THEM PLAY!
As always, please do not hesitate to contact my office with any questions or concerns. You can reach me toll free at 1-800-577-6212, via email at BethGriffin@house.mi.gov and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RepBethGriffin.