Georgia reopened much of its economy on Friday, forcing workers back to their jobs and into danger weeks before medical experts and the Trump administration say is safe.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) decreed that businesses of all kinds including hair and nail salons, tattoo parlors, massage parlors, gyms, and bowling alleys can all reopen, so long as they practice social distancing. Houses of worship can hold services once again. Theaters and dine-in restaurants can reopen on Monday.
Kemp is one of a half-dozen southern GOP governors who are rushing to lift coronavirus restrictions faster than the experts say they should. Those states also refused to expand Medicaid, leading to some of the highest uninsured rates in the country.
That means if workers do get sick as a result of being forced to return to work, many won’t have health insurance and could face financial ruin if they go get treatment.