May 22, 2020

Ralph Northam Virginia COVID-19 Press Conference Transcript May 22

Ralph Northam Coronavirus Press Conference May 22
RevBlogTranscriptsCOVID-19 Briefing & Press Conference TranscriptsRalph Northam Virginia COVID-19 Press Conference Transcript May 22

Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia held a coronavirus press conference on May 22. Northam said he will make an announcement on masks/face coverings, give updates on reopening process next Tuesday. There is speculation this could mean a coming order on face masks for Virginians.

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Governor Ralph Northam: (00:08)
Well, good afternoon, and thanks again for joining us. Happy Friday and also happy Memorial Day weekend. Today I want to talk about where we are on our testing, and highlight a new tool that will help assess people, assess their symptoms, and find a place to get tested.

Governor Ralph Northam: (00:26)
First, let’s look at a couple of slides about our testing data. Yesterday, we got results of 6,543 new PCR tests, and 1,438 serology tests. As you can see from this slide, the percent positivity from testing continues to trend downward. Statewide, it is at about 15%. And on this slide, you’ll see the number of tests continues to trend upward. Both of these are good things.

Governor Ralph Northam: (01:05)
We know that there are simple steps that all of us can take, and should, to help stop the spread of this virus. We know they work and we know that these guidelines will be part of our new normal as we continue to move forward. You’ve heard me say this before. Please wash your hands. Stay six feet away from other people, and wear a face covering in public. We know that when most people wear masks, that goes a long way toward reducing the spread of the disease. As I have said before, wearing a mask could literally save someone else’s life. That is becoming clearer every day as we move further into managing this virus over the longterm. Face coverings are an important part of the next steps, and we will have more to say about that next week, especially as we think about phase one and phase two.

Governor Ralph Northam: (02:09)
I know everyone is wondering when Northern Virginia, Richmond, and Accomack County will be able to move into phase one, and when the rest of the state will move into phase two. We are in frequent communication with officials in those localities, and we’ll have more information to share next week. But to be clear, the floor that we establish will not change.

Governor Ralph Northam: (02:35)
Today we’re launching a new symptom checker that will help people assess whether they should see a doctor, self-isolate, or get tested. The Virginia Department of Health is launching COVIDCHECK. I’ll repeat that. COVIDCHECK, a new telehealth and online risk assessment tool. You can go online to the VDH website and answer questions about your symptoms, and the tool will give recommendations about what to do next, such as self-isolation, seeing your doctor, or seeking emergency care. It also can give you options for where to get tested near you.

Governor Ralph Northam: (03:19)
As we have talked about, testing and tracing are critical pieces of this puzzle as we move forward. VDH is in the process of hiring the tracing workforce that we need, and we keep expanding our testing capabilities. We are doing large scale community testing with the VDH, and in many cases, the National Guard, as well as private contractors. We’re working to partner with pharmacies for testing, and we continue to ensure that doctor’s offices and clinics are able to access testing.

Governor Ralph Northam: (03:58)
This week, we did more than 4, 000 tests at community events in Woodbridge, Manassas, and Leesburg. The Virginia National Guard has done almost 11,000 tests as of this past Tuesday, and will have done 9,000 this week as of Sunday. Next week, we have planned 44 community testing events, and we anticipate that will include 17,500 tests. We’ll also be doing point prevalence surveys in approximately 15 facilities with 6,000 tests.

Governor Ralph Northam: (04:36)
And speaking of the National Guard, yesterday there was flooding in Southwest Virginia. Members of our National Guard worked with the Division 6 Swiftwater Rescue Team members from Roanoke Fire EMS to rescue 116 people, four dogs, and yes, two birds, in Roanoke. I have spoken previously about how grateful I am and how grateful all of us are to our National Guard members for their service during this time, and this is an important reminder of how much we rely on the National Guard for help during emergencies of all kinds.

Governor Ralph Northam: (05:23)
Now I’d like to highlight an important step forward for the more than 740,000 Virginians who rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits to feed their families. We also refer to that as SNAP benefits. This week, the USDA has approved a pilot project from our Department of Social Services to allow SNAP recipients to order groceries online, and to also have them delivered. This will launch next Friday, May the 29th. To start, this online shopping access will be available through Amazon and Walmart. Other retailers may be accepted into the program by contacting the USDA. This will help families get access to nutritious food without having to leave their homes. For families with small children or with members who have underlying health conditions that put them at greater risk, this will help keep them even safer. I want to thank Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine for their work to make this pilot project happen.

Governor Ralph Northam: (06:36)
Yesterday, we received the first monthly unemployment report that really shows the impact this pandemic is having on our employment in Virginia. As you know, we had enjoyed a low 2.8% unemployment rate prior to COVID-19. For April, however, our unemployment rate rose to 10.6%. This is expected, as we now have approximately 720,000 people in Virginia who have filed for unemployment, including 44,000 new claims this past week. There have been reports that I realized individuals, Virginians are having difficulty getting their unemployment benefits, so I’m pleased to announce that we are opening up a new call center with 315 additional employees to help handle those requests.

Governor Ralph Northam: (07:33)
This is the season when Virginia high school and college seniors would be graduating. The pandemic has turned all of those celebrations literally upside down. I’m sorry that graduates across Virginia will not get to commemorate this achievement with their friends and their families. However, Virginia public media, who also helps with these presentations, by the way, has worked to create a virtual graduation ceremony. Virginia Graduates Together will air next Friday on public television stations across the state, as well as online. Members of the class of 2020 can send VPM photos, messages, videos, and more at I’ll repeat that again., and please do that by Sunday. Our staff has really played a large role, put a lot of effort, and I think our graduates will find it really good, and I think they’ll also find that there are some special guests that they will enjoy, that will be speaking to them as part of that graduation ceremony.

Governor Ralph Northam: (08:53)
I want to say Eid Mubarak to all Muslims across the Commonwealth. For those planning Eid prayers, please remember to follow social distancing. This year, Ramadan and Eid have fallen in the middle of difficult times. Both Pam and I join in wishing you all a blessed and joyous celebration.

Governor Ralph Northam: (09:17)
And finally, this Monday will be Memorial Day. It is hard to believe we are already at the end of May. These past three months have felt both very fast and very long. I want to take this time to recognize all of the members of the military who have given their lives to defend our nation. Since World War II, nearly 13,000 Virginians have died in the line of duty. As we head into the weekend, and on Monday, I ask all of you to remember and reflect on those sacrifices, and remember the loved ones left behind. Our flags will be at half staff to honor their sacrifices. The Virginia War Memorial holds a Memorial Day ceremony every year.

Governor Ralph Northam: (10:03)
… annual War Memorial holds a Memorial Day ceremony every year. This year it will be virtual, and I would encourage everyone to tune in to that ceremony on Monday morning at 10:00 AM. Additionally, State flags will be flown at half staff to honor people who have died from COVID-19 pandemic. They are our friends and our neighbors, and they leave behind families who love them, and we all mourn their loss.

Governor Ralph Northam: (10:29)
I want to remind Virginians of a couple of other safety issues as we head into this weekend. One, as I mentioned earlier, it has been raining a great deal across much of the Commonwealth, especially in the Southwest. That means rivers are up and flooding is possible. Be aware of river restrictions and local weather forecast. Two, even though this is normally a holiday weekend, we still need everyone to be smart and safe this weekend. Don’t gather in large groups, don’t crowd parks or natural areas, remember to maintain your social distancing, and please wear a face covering when you’re out in public. Now I’ll ask Dr. Norm Oliver to give us a health update, and then we’ll be glad to take your questions, Dr. Oliver.

Dr. Norman Oliver: (11:17)
Thank you, Governor. Briefly on the case report for today, we currently have 34,950 cases of COVID-19 as our total number of cases. That’s 813 new cases in the last 24 hour reporting period. The total deaths stand at 1,136. That’s an increase of 37. Governor Northam mentioned the number of PCR and serology tests that we had in the last reporting period. African-American cases stand at a total of 5,285, which is about 22% of all of our cases. The deaths among African-Americans stands at 234, which is about 24%. For Latinx people, the cases stand at 10,977 or about 47%, and the deaths in that community at 90, which is about 10%. Thank you.

Governor Ralph Northam: (12:27)
Thanks, Dr. Oliver.

Cam: (12:32)
Governor Northam, I know you mentioned you’re just going to talk about it more next week, but yesterday Mayor Lavar Stoney said that he had written requesting at least a mask mandate for the city. Have you made a decision on that request, and can you say whether or not you would grant this or potentially for the state as well?

Governor Ralph Northam: (12:51)
Yeah, the question is about the wearing of facial protection and, Cam, I appreciate that question. I spoke with our Mayor earlier today, also received a letter from him and I applaud the Mayor for wanting to do what’s safe in our city of Richmond. We also know, as I mentioned earlier, that facial protection is one of the ways that we stop the spread of this virus, so we have been talking about this for a number of days. We are working through the policy, Cam, over the next couple of days, and I will make an announcement on Tuesday regarding that.

Governor Ralph Northam: (13:27)
Especially, and we’re trying to work through some of the details. Obviously, it’s an equity issue. We want to make sure everybody has access to a mask. We also want to talk about how we enforce that, but I’ll be making that announcement on Tuesday and especially for individuals that are going into places of business, because that’s one of the most vulnerable places. Again, the mask is intended to protect other people, and that’s what our goal is.

Cam: (13:55)
And that decision will be for Richmond or for the State?

Governor Ralph Northam: (13:58)
That will be for all of Virginia.

Cam: (13:58)
For all of Virginia.

Governor Ralph Northam: (14:00)
Yes. Thank you for clarifying.

Speaker 2: (14:03)
Whitney Evans BPM.

Whitney Evans: (14:06)
Hi, Governor. There’ve been some questions about whether the work search requirement for unemployment benefits will be reinstated. Do you have a plan to bring that back, and how concerned are you about the unemployment trust fund being depleted?

Governor Ralph Northam: (14:21)
Megan Healy is going to come up. What was the second?

Megan Healy: (14:23)
Work search requirement, unemployment trust fund.

Governor Ralph Northam: (14:23)

Megan Healy: (14:32)
Thank you for that question. First, I’ll talk about the work search requirement. During usual regular unemployment insurance, that if someone has been laid off they are required to search for a job, then we have a technology system that looks at when you’ve applied for a job, as well as if you’re in training. That currently, the governor has waived that and it’s going to be continuing to waive until we actually open up our workforce centers. We have 61 of them, and I want to make sure that Virginians, when they do a work search, that there’s someone there to make sure, hold their hand and help them with resume building as well as how to search for jobs as well. So job centers are not open, so we’re working on what that plan looks like there so you can go through the technology. You can still call them, but they’re working remotely.

Megan Healy: (15:12)
The second question is about the unemployment insurance trust fund. This is about 80% of our employers pay into this trust fund by unemployment insurance tax. It’s very low because we follow guidelines from federal Department of labor, so we get a 90% cut off that. A lot of the unemployment is the $600 extra per week, and also the pandemic unemployment assistance program, which is for our gig workers. That directly comes from the federal government, so that money is not coming out of the trust. We are spending a lot of that trust, so we’ve asked the federal government, the Governor multiple times to the congressional delegation to add support to make sure that we can backfill that unemployment insurance trust. We’re not sure, we’re still watching it. We can’t borrow currently from the federal government, but we’re looking at how we’re going to pay that back. We’re not going to make that decision probably for a couple of months.

Governor Ralph Northam: (16:04)
Thanks, Megan.

Henry: (16:06)
Not to catch you off guard with this, but just from the Trump administration, the CDC, at the Trump administration’s request is apparently declared all churches nationwide essential and that they should open immediately. What would be your response to that?

Governor Ralph Northam: (16:19)
Well, Henry, the question is about our places of worship across the Commonwealth. The first thing that I would say is in a time like this, when so many people are struggling and making sacrifices, faith is more important than ever. We want to make sure that that individuals are allowed to practice their religion and that they’re allowed to do it safely. So as we went into phase one we changed the guidelines regarding our places of worship and that now they are on the same level as retail stores, that they can have 50% capacity. They need to continue to practice social distancing, hygiene, those types of things.

Governor Ralph Northam: (17:02)
So we made that announcement as part of phase one. I have talked to a lot of faith leaders, including my minister on the Eastern shore, and a lot of churches are continuing to do the outside, the drive up services. So just because we’ve allowed places of worship to open up with those new guidelines, it doesn’t mean that they have to. So if they’re more comfortable continuing the practices that they’ve been using over the past few weeks, they can do that, but we’ve made sure that people can continue to practice their faith as we work through this pandemic.

Speaker 2: (17:41)
Tracy Agnew, the Suffolk News-Herald.

Tracy Agnew: (17:46)
Thank you. My question for the Governor is whether you are pleased with the way the statistics are trending, and do you believe most of Virginia will be able to progress through the phases and not go backward?

Governor Ralph Northam: (17:57)
The question is, am I pleased with the way the statistics and the data are trending? So far in most parts of Virginia, our percent positivity continues to trend downward. We’re still watching very closely with the leaders in Northern Virginia what those numbers are doing as well as the Eastern shore and here in Richmond.

Governor Ralph Northam: (18:20)
In addition to the percent positivity, we also use other metrics that we have talked about in the past, our hospital capacity, which to date have been strong, our capacity for ventilators, our supply of PPE, and our ability to test. All of these things are taken to account as we move forward. I will have further to say early next week regarding the three areas that haven’t entered phase one, and also when we think Virginia can safely move into phase two.

Speaker 2: (18:59)

Greg: (18:59)
Along with those statistics, sir, there was a uptick in the number of deaths reported today. Does that concern you? That’s got to be something that you were watching also, isn’t it?

Governor Ralph Northam: (19:08)
We are, Greg. And again, we’re looking at the trends, the deaths are not necessarily those that have occurred in the last 24 hours. So it depends on when the death certificate is signed and when the Virginia department of health is notified. So every death is important, in answer to your question, but we’re following the trends. And as you’ve seen, I don’t remember all of the numbers off the top of my head, but there was one day this week where we had, I think, 12. So not every day has been 37, but certainly the fact that we have 37 additional deaths that have been reported today is very concerning to me. That’s a part of what we will follow as we move forward.

Speaker 2: (19:55)
Luanne Rife with the Roanoke Times.

Luanne Rife: (19:58)
Good afternoon, Governor. You had mentioned briefly about the point prevalence survey …

Speaker 3: (20:03)
You mentioned briefly about the point prevalence survey. And we get a lot of questions from people about that as to whether the Department is going to be posting the information about that as far as how many facilities, and the number of tests, and the number of positives. And secondary to that is, we were wondering if the Department is finding, as the CDC has recently recorded, the high prevalence of asymptomatic infections in longterm care?

Governor Ralph Northam: (20:35)
All right. Thank you. Which of you want to take it? Dr. Forlano. Thank you.

Dr. Forlano: (20:39)
Thank you. Hi, the question is around our Point Prevalence surveys and longterm care. We’ve shared some aggregate data, earlier today actually, around our point prevalence surveys. There was a graph earlier today. We’re happy to share that further. Data as of a couple of days ago, 43 longterm care facilities were at some point in the process of Point Prevalent surveys, either already having completed them, specimens being collected at the laboratory, being scheduled, et cetera. And we’re grateful for the partnership with the National Guard there. So, yes. We will continue to provide updates on the aggregate information. We won’t be providing the specifics as to number of cases, for example, in a given facility, but happy to keep updating you on our progress in general.

Dr. Oliver: (21:29)
And the asymptomatic.

Dr. Forlano: (21:32)
Oh. Asymptomatic infections in longterm care facility residents, yes. That has been demonstrated in the facilities here in Virginia. That’s not unique here in Virginia. That’s part of the reason why we do point prevalent surveys to establish the existence of those asymptomatic individuals, so they can be cohorted or put together with the right kinds of people. And we can make sure that they are isolated or quarantined within the facility for appropriate infection prevention.

Speaker 4: (22:08)
Yeah. Obviously, Memorial Day weekend is really busy for travel. I’m wondering if you have anything specific to say to people who are still in those areas like Richmond that are closed? And if they shouldn’t be traveling outside of their city or region, if they’re under a stay at home order?

Governor Ralph Northam: (22:26)
The question is those that are traveling and may be visiting Richmond, or the Eastern shore, Accomack County specifically, and Northern Virginia. And they are reminded that those three areas that we refer to are still under the stay at home order. So, unless it’s essential that they need to be out, we don’t expect people to be traveling in those particular areas.

Speaker 4: (22:54)
And maybe you said this, but just to be clear, I’m saying for people that live in Richmond and in Northern Virginia and traveling outside to, say, Virginia Beach, should they not be doing that, given that Richmond is still under a stay at home order?

Governor Ralph Northam: (23:05)
They are still under the state at home order. So, we would encourage them to abide by those guidelines. Yes.

Speaker 5: (23:13)
Governor, Max Thornberry with the Northern Virginia Daily.

Max Thornberry: (23:15)
Thank you. I’ve got a question about reopening in different areas of the Commonwealth. With Northern Virginia a week out from being eligible to open under phase one, if numbers continue to trend, I think that will overlap with other places being technically allowed to go into phase two, if numbers allow for that? Is there a chance that we’re going to see different parts of the Commonwealth in two, three different stages of reopening? Or will the entire Commonwealth be required to stay within a phase of each other, if that makes sense?

Governor Ralph Northam: (23:55)
I think I understand your question. And this is the reason. The question is, will certain areas of Virginia be able to move forward into phase two and phase three before others? And the answer to that is, we have placed a floor. And I’ve done that to be consistent across Virginia. And I’ve had a number of requests, can a part of this county or town move forward more quickly. And the answer to that is, we’re not allowing that. We have the floor in place that we will maintain. Now, if individuals want to raise the ceiling, such as they have done in Northern Virginia, the Eastern shore, and Richmond, then we will have those discussions. And, upon their request, we will make decisions. But, as far as the floor, we’re not going to change the floor.

Max Thornberry: (24:42)
Governor, I’m sorry. If I could clarify real quick. So, the rest of the state will not be going into phase two until Northern Virginia, Richmond, and Accomack County enter into phase one?

Governor Ralph Northam: (24:55)
Okay. A little bit different question. Will Accomack County, Northern Virginia, and Richmond enter phase two at a different time. They’re on a different schedule right now. So, I don’t anticipate changing that schedule. So, for example, and we’re continuing to discuss this with their leaders, but if we move the rest of the state, for example, to phase two, they may be going into phase one. So, they will be behind the rest of the state. And, if they feel that their numbers warrant moving into the phase with the rest of the state, then obviously we’ll have that discussion.

Andre: (25:34)
Governor, some folks are asking about a detailed number of active cases to be reported. Also wondering, could you report Virginians who have recovered from the virus? And then, on the sidebar, maybe for Dr. Forlano, should toddlers, pre-teens, even teens wear a mask when they’re out in public at grocery stores around the communities?

Governor Ralph Northam: (25:57)
Yeah. I’m going to let either Dr. Forlano or Dr. Oliver answer the first part of your question. But I would encourage children to wear facial protection when they’re out and about in the public. And the reason is that they can contract the virus. Some of them are symptomatic. As you know, we’ve had this vasculitis syndrome, but some of them are asymptomatic. And so, in order to protect others, we would encourage them to wear a mask as well.

Dr. Oliver: (26:33)
Andre, I’m sorry. I’m going to ask you to repeat that question,

Andre: (26:36)
Some Virginians we’re wondering, could you all report a more detailed account of active cases? And also, could you report the number of Virginians who have actually recovered from the virus, who were successful and beat COVID-19?

Dr. Oliver: (26:51)
The way our system is set up for tracking the public health threats like COVID-19 in the population is identifying cases when they come up and then tracking their contacts and helping people to identify themselves as being possibly exposed to that illness. We’re not actually taking care of the patients. We don’t provide the care. And I say that because we wouldn’t necessarily therefore know about their recovery or not because we’re not taking care of them. As for providing more information on the active cases, we report the cases when we get them. And that’s really the limit of what we do. I don’t know what other information we could really provide around the case other than it’s location, which we do in terms of regions, and districts, counties. And recently we’ve been reporting the locality as well. Thank you.

Speaker 6: (28:02)
Governor, if I may?

Governor Ralph Northam: (28:03)

Speaker 6: (28:07)
I’ll just add to what Commissioner Oliver said. We do have that in the public domain. For example, from the team at the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, on their website, they do report those that have been discharged and those that are there. And the governor showed the data that we have from our hospitals. Those are in the ICU, total numbers in the hospitals, those that are on ventilators. So, we definitely look at that each day and that is in the VHHA’s website that we import that information.

Speaker 6: (28:37)
So, I think they have over 4,000 people discharged. So, that is part of the recovery. But the vast majority, thank goodness, recover from COVID-19, so the 95% or more. So, we do have lots of information about those that recovered. And I think part of your question may be to emphasize those that triumph over this disease. And that’s something that I think is very important. You make an excellent point. And we share that, how important it is to celebrate those that have survived and are back to full recovery after the illness.

Speaker 7: (29:15)
Governor, yeah. I know that there are probably hundreds of Virginians that have received positive antibody test results. I’m just wondering if there’s any guidance for how those people should continue to engage with the public and what actions they need to be taking or not? And I also wonder if maybe there’s coming guidance on antibody tests, where people should get tested, and when they showed, and even if they should?

Governor Ralph Northam: (29:41)
Do you want to comment on antibody testing?

Dr. Forlano: (29:48)
I can provide a little insight.

Governor Ralph Northam: (29:49)
That’s fine.

Dr. Forlano: (29:52)
Hi. The question is around antibody testing and its role, essentially. The first thing I’ll say is, there is some information about the different kinds of tests, and when they should be used, and how they can be interpreted.

Speaker 8: (30:03)
… of tests and when they should be used and how they can be interpreted on our webpage at the Virginia Department of Health. I think the role of antibody testing, we’re still learning about that. I think the best thing to do depending, is definitely work with your individual healthcare provider who’s provided that test to you. But I think in, Mel, in general, we’re still learning about the role of antibody testing. I think we’re all equally eager to have additional science there.

Mel: (30:32)
[inaudible 00:30:32] people who have already received a positive test result, let’s say, I spoke to a woman yesterday who went to test and within 24 hours she had a positive result. What would be the guidance with somebody like that?

Speaker 8: (30:46)
[inaudible 00:30:46] Tony? Dr. Tony, do you want to chime in there at all?

Dr. Tony: (30:50)
You want me to take a shot at it?

Speaker 8: (30:51)

Dr. Tony: (30:55)
Mel, the question is what to advise someone who’s had the serology test, the antibody test who’s been tested positive? What kind of behavior they should have?

Dr. Tony: (31:07)
Now implied in that question is the idea that if they had what we call an IgG result, which normally would indicate that someone is immune to whatever they were exposed to in the past, and that they no longer have the infection. If you tested me, you would find out that I’m IgG positive for chickenpox. It’s not likely that I’m going to get chickenpox again, because of that antibody. As Dr. Forlano just explained, we don’t know if that’s the case with COVID-19. There’s conflicting evidence on that. My advice to someone, and I would do this myself if I had a positive antibody test to COVID-19, I would still be obsessive about washing my hands, covering my face when I’m in public and I can’t be socially distant, and practicing social distancing in other ways. In other words, acting as though I could still get COVID-19 because we don’t know whether or not having IgG to COVID-19 protects you at this point.

Speaker 9: (32:26)
Take one more on the phone and that’s about it.

Speaker 10: (32:28)
The last question will be from Roger Watson with the Farmville Herald.

Roger Watson: (32:34)
Thank you. This question is for Secretary Moran. In a release about staying safe this Memorial day, you’re quoted as saying that triple digit speeds put everyone at risk. I’m wondering if you can elaborate further on that as far as how often people are driving at excessive speeds during the pandemic and how big of a problem that has been?

Governor Ralph Northam: (32:53)
Speed. [inaudible 00:32:54] kind of car they have.

Sec. Brian Moran: (32:56)
Well, good afternoon. The question with respect to triple digit speeds on our highways, and really an appropriate question for the eve of Friday of a Memorial Weekend. The state police just issued a warning. They will be on the roads. All of you listening and hearing our voice, let us tell you, please slow down. Triple digit speeds are inherently dangerous on our roadways. Extra law enforcement will be on the road, making sure our speed limits are enforced. As you all know, there will not be as much traveling this weekend, so you may be tempted. Please don’t. Please observe the speed limit. Be safe. Arrive at your destination safely.

Sec. Brian Moran: (33:45)
Appreciate the question, please drive safely. We look forward to seeing you all next week. Thank you for the question.

Governor Ralph Northam: (33:53)
Thank you, Brian.

Governor Ralph Northam: (33:55)
In closing, I want to remind people of what Memorial Weekend means, and that is that many men and women who wore the cloth paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we can have the freedoms that we enjoy every day. Remember that over the weekend. If you see an active duty member of our service, thank them for what they do. Also a veteran, thank them as well for their service.

Governor Ralph Northam: (34:22)
We talked a bit earlier today about the importance of wearing a face mask, the facial protection. We are working on the policy of that this weekend. But I always like to give my fellow Virginians some homework on Friday afternoon, and so your homework this weekend is to first of all have a safe and peaceful weekend, but also make plans for you and your other family members to have facial protection. These are available at a lot of different areas across Virginia. Also, if you go onto the internet, there are websites that will show you how to actually make a mask. You can take a bandana or actually a handkerchief and make your own mask. Just looking around the room and I appreciate everybody wearing facial protection. I think it’s fair to say that people have gotten very creative with their facial protection. That’s your homework for the weekend.

Governor Ralph Northam: (35:21)
Be ready on Tuesday to go out and about in your business when it’s essential with facial protection. We will make that announcement on Tuesday, but please be safe as Secretary Moran said this weekend and enjoy your family. We look forward to being with you on Tuesday afternoon. Thank you very much.

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