Answered: Your thoughts on Florida’s reopening plan

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Today marks day two into phase one of Gov. DeSantis’s state-wide reopening plan for Florida. As opinions vary across the nation on whether states should start opening up now or later, we wanted to get your take on FL’s reopening plan so far, Lakeland.

In a recent newsletter, we posed the question: “Do you agree with the current reopening plan?”, and you delivered with 140+ responses.

Here’s what some of you had to say. 👇


“I think it is reasonable as long as people do not take advantage of it . There are still too many people who do not take it seriously but we have to start somewhere.” – Marcy R.
”It’s about time. The world is living off of fear. I personally think that hairdressers, tattoo artists and others like that should be able to open. They need to make a living too.” – AB
“We have to start somewhere. I am happy to follow the guidelines set up by our governor as it follows the most recent protocol. God be with us.“ – Sandy R.
“I’m into it! For the mental health of everyone, this is a great plan. I hope They can reopen parks, lakes and beaches in phase 2!” – Madison M.
“mostly positive” – John L.
”I think that it’s smart that they are reopening with strict rules applying!” – Kelsey N.
”While I am ready to get back to “normal “ I understand safety needs to be our top priority. A slow opening makes sense. If we all do what we are supposed to we can hopefully return to some normalcy sooner than later.” – Jenny H.
”We’re all going to have to leave our homes at some point. Just re-open everything!” – Joe R.
”I agree.” – Tammy J.
”VERY REASONABLE” – John W.”Yes, especially reviewing and continuing forward in a few weeks if data indicates it is safe to do so.” – Kathi B.
• ”Yes , we have to , be smart , be safe, be considerate” – John P.
• ”Yes” – David S.
• ”I agree with Governor” – Dianne B.
• ”Looking reasonably appropriate.” – Tom L.
• ”Happy it will be done in phases.” – Greg F.
”I think the governor is correct in being cautious and is doing the best for the residents of Florida” – Mike Y.
”Great 👍” – Glenn H.
”I agree with it” – Mona E.
”Absolutely time to get the economy moving.” – Jill A.
”Slow is a good plan. I just can’t wait to get my haircut and get back to the gym.” – Jeff P.
”Absolutely” – Steve H.
• ”The reopening plan is is reasonable and I support it.” – Karma S.

”Ready, set, GOoooo ;-))))” – Cheryl F.
”Yes.” – Charlene R.
”I think it is very conservative and so I do agree with it.” – Laura V.
”As a Healthcare provider and small business who has been shut down for 6 weeks, we welcome the re-opening. We have always strived to keep our patients safe and stay up to date with proper infection protocols, and that will continue as we move forward from the COVID-19 crisis.” – Kay S.
”Yes...I agree” – Marie L.
”It seems reasonable” – Patricia A.
”Yes we should start to reopen” – Shelia H.
”Yes” – Cheryl E.
• ”Yes. should not have closed down to begin with. Cost of shutdown (financial and mental health) will be multiple times more costly to FLA than COVID.” – Mike H.
• ”I think it is outstanding” – Jim C.
”Yes” – Tom L.
”Agree” – Marcia W.
”OPEN but maintain mask and social distancing” – Bert W.
”Yes. Is there are negative reactions abate the plan immediately.” – Dick H.
• ”I think everything should be opened. It is a terrible strain on people and businesses. Thank you” – Carmen M.
• ”I think it is about time. Way to go lets start slow and get things going in the right direction” – Cynde J.
”It needs to reopen ...all..everything” – Hannah Q.
• ”For the physical/Mental/economic health & well being of people in general, moving forward cautiously to reopen the state, following President Trumps guidelines, is essential, with the sick continuing to self choose to quarantine, of course.” – Rachel M.
”Its ok if everybody obides by it. I am a big bingo player so hope it comes back soon.” – Michael S.
”I agree with the slow reopening plan” – Marsha B.
”Yes! Get the healthy back to work! Those at risk should continue to stay home. Individuals should decide to wear masks and all should practice social distancing when out in public.” – Deb W.
”The purpose of the shutdown was to “flatten the curve” and that has been successful. The shutdown was not to stop all cases of Coronavirus, that’s unfeasible. Yes, people will continue to contract this illness, but that can’t keep us in our homes forever. As long as there are ample medical resources available to help combat Coronavirus we should be able to reopen our community.” – Blake G.
”I feel good with the plan, i think taking it very safe and slow is a good idea.” – Sharon M.
”Good start--careful, but beginning” – Wayne S.
”We have to start somewhere. I am happy to follow the guidelines set up by our governor as it follows the most recent protocol. God be with us.” – Sandy R.
”Slow opening is best to keep the Covid19 numbers down.” – Mary K.
”Yes, I agree with this plan. The economy is very sick as well and needs some help.” – Mike B.
• ”Yes, if people are acting responsibly, it will broaden” – Christine M.
”I think it is a good plan. Hopefully everyone will follow the rules.” – Cindy H.
”I think it is reasonable. Modify as circumstances indicate in the days, weeks and months ahead.” – Stuart P., MD
”Good Plan. Some Florida counties could probably move at a little faster pace, but overall nice conservative strategy. So far, he has had a great balance between safety and liberty.” – Raymond M.
”I think this is a good plan. I did not vote for Ron DeSantis but I agree with the moves he has made here and believe from watching the press conference he has good data to back up these decisions.” – Nicki T.
”It’s time. As long as we go at it slowly and intelligently, I think we’ll be fine. I, for one, just want to go for breakfast in a diner. I’ve really missed that on the weekend!” – Mike S.
”I think Florida has a good reopening plan.” – Jill C.
• ”Yes I agree. We have to move money through economies and use the new norm of social distancing.” – Trese H.
”Agree” – Angela L.
• ”Its about time, as long as people pay attention to the guidelines.” – Richard W.
”I agree with the reopening plan” – Silvio M.
”It seems measured and reasonable, following medical guidelines with room to adjust as necessary.” – Sheli D.
”I think it is a well thought out plan to ease back to normal, but I sure wish I could get a haircut.” – Dave M.
”Yes! I’m fine with it but will not rush out once we get the go-ahead. I’ll probably stay home a week beyond that” – Michael W.


“Do NOT agree. Open all up NOW.” – Bill C.
“it’s too soon. Numbers are still high and not enough testing.“ – Laura M.
“Too much too soon, our #’s are still rising” – Kathy L.
”I will like him to see the beaches closed. Parks should not be open either. People don’t care. They will not follow rules. A lockdown was what he was supposed to do. Period” – Lourdes T.
”I don’t think this is a good idea, they should’ve wait at least another 2 wks to see if the spread has slow down by then.” – Betzi A.
• ”Time makes money disease effects loss of money. Do not open yet until Florida is a healthier place. We will be prosperous in do time. Time is the key word.” – Neal P.
”Does not protect the furloughed 66yr olds that are being called back to work in a medical clinic ?” – PH
”Opening too soon” – Eli S.
”Way too soon, need to follow WH guidelines of lessening cases prior to opening.” – Valerie D.
”I understand that businesses need to get back to work. But the numbers are still rising. I think that people who can work from home should and should not be forced back into offices if they have health concerns.” – Shelly S.
”It feels like Lakeland is the state’s redheaded stepchild. Our positive cases are increasing but we have no testing site? Face masks should be mandatory. In a store in A Lkld yesterday, there were 14 customers: 3 of us wore masks, 11 did not. (Neither did the cashier.) If people can’t be smart enough to protect on their own, make it mandatory.” – Marilynn M.
”I believe it is premature and we will soon see the spike in new cases.” – Liz G.
”I do not agree” – Irizarry
”This plan is ridiculous. It is far too conservative and defies any logic. It doesn’t allow many places to reopen that have far more social distancing capability than places like grocery stores and home improvement stores that never closed. Fort Frasier trail, literally a sidewalk where it’s impossible to keep social distance when passing, is okay but Colt Creek State Park, where I have never come within 6 feet of anyone anytime I’ve visited, is not? Really hard to have any respect for this plan” – Nicole P.
”Until we have more testing, it’s TOO soon! We ALSO need the exact figures from the health department, CDC, and every agency tracking the virus. These have been altered, sometimes stopped, to downplay the numbers, so DeSantis can stay on the good side of Trump. He NEEDS to watch out for the residents of Florida, first and foremost!” – Sue J.
”I hate when people tell me what to do. Because of that, I have never berated anyone for going out, not using a mask, etc. but reopening in early May is just going to result in a spike in cases. It’s too early, we’re not ready health-wise.” – Emily W.
”I strongly disagree with this plan. We are in a global pandemic. Historically situations of this type have come in waves. This is only the first wave. We have no idea when nor exactly what the next wave will be. I think we need to flatten the curve a little bit more at least.” – Petra S.
”No, should not reopen. No testing, numbers not accurate!” – Cynthia H.
”I think there’s not enough changing to reopen. We are in the same situation we were in before, not better, so there’s no proof of data that pushes for reopening”. – Melissa K.

Somewhat agree

• ”I think it is good but should be a way to open every thing up with proper precautions” – Mike
”Mostly agree but take care of those who can’t return yet because of being vulnerable themselves or taking care of someone who is.” – Roxie S.
”Overall, good choices. Not sure why dog parks aren’t open (they have Outdoor space, don’t require City staff & have bathing stations), and not sure why bars aren’t allowed to open with same rules as restaurants. Less opportunity for contamination as no food is being served.” – Donna M.
• ”Open Hair salons and other personnel services.” – Anne A.
• ”Lacks detail. Need more testing and tracing capacity.” – James R.
• “I think that even if stores were’t reopening, that people would be starting on their own to do less stay at home, as it’s getting more difficult to self isolate. The opening plans are good. I wish hairdressers could open. It’s just one on one for service.” – Kathy M.
“Mostly agree but take care of those who can’t return yet because of being vulnerable themselves or taking care of someone who is.“ – Roxie S.
• ”Barber shops need to open” – Mike A.
• “It needs to be better schools need to reopen and other places to people should be able to eat inside if they want to” – Randy D.
”I feel everyone should have to wear a mask in public spaces. by not wearing a mask you are endangering other people.” – Jean W.
”Wish it was 50% instead of 25%.” – CG
”Yes, absolutely open. there should be a plan for personal services.” – Keri H.
”I think it might be a tad too early but I’m glad to see that it is being taken slowly.” – Grason S.

– LALtoday team (Kaylee and Abby)

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