Ohio House Minority Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron), today sent a letter calling on Governor Mike DeWine to veto Senate Bill (SB) 311, legislation Democrats say will slow the state’s coronavirus response, ultimately leading to more deaths and further destabilizing Ohio’s economy. Statehouse Republicans fast tracked SB 311 last week, voting along party lines to pass the controversial bill that would strip executive power from the state’s Health Director during public health crises. The bill now awaits the governor’s signature.
“Stripping the State Health Director from the ability to take action during a public health crisis puts all Ohioans in danger. It will only lead to more deaths and will further destabilize our economy. As members of the General Assembly, we want to get through this crisis and reopen our economy, but that can only happen if the health and safety of our citizens are part of those decisions. That means listening to health experts, implementing strategies to control the virus, protecting workers and restoring consumer confidence. This bill will slow our response, cost more lives and force more businesses into financial ruin,” wrote Leader Sykes.