Governor Greg Abbott spoke with CBS 4 to discuss why hair salons and barbershops were allowed to reopen ahead of schedule, details on the COVID-19 strikeforce, and confirmed there is help on the way for the agricultural sector.
In Governor Abbott’s original plan to reopen Texas, barbershops and salons were to remain closed.
However, a recent decision from the governor is allowing those businesses to reopen on Friday.
During the interview, Abbott clarified that in his executive order, he allowed flexibility for those businesses to be reopened if he saw progress throughout the state.
Abbott assured that the decision was made through the advice of medical professionals and practices will be in place to ensure that the businesses follow safety protocols.
According to the Texas.gov website, the strike force to open Texas includes about 50 business owners but only six medical professionals.
When asked about the disparity, Abbott stated that they wanted advice from business owners across the state to help them through this.
Abbott affirmed that the six medical professionals were some of the state’s top experts in the field.
During a phone call earlier this week, Abbott commented that reopening Texas creates a risk for an increase in cases.
“As long as an infectious disease exists, and as long as people interact, there will be a transmission,” said Abbott. “The goal is to… stop the spread of the coronavirus. [Next,] is to create a bridge from where we are now to when we have a vaccination.”
Abbott stated that the goal of the reopening is to get people back to work.
“There are so many people who have lost their jobs who need to get back reengaged,” said Abbott. “Other essential businesses can be open while we continue to slow the spread.”
An official with the Texas Department of Agriculture commented that the rural healthcare system is about to fail and asked for the governor’s assistance of $40 million for healthcare facilities.
Governor Abbott confirmed that the money was sent out and authorized, despite the department’s comment that they had not received it yet.