Texas HDC Chair Chris Turner Statement on Abbott’s Reopening


TEXAS – Today, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a new executive orders regarding how the state of Texas will respond to the novel coronavirus and its resulting disease, COVID-19.

Rep. Chris Turner (D-Grand Prairie), Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement in response:

“We all want businesses to safely reopen as soon as possible and that’s why I’m disappointed we did not hear more details on how Texas’ COVID-19 testing would increase. We’re near last in the nation on per capita testing and Gov. Abbott didn’t present a clear plan how that’s going to change, even though experts agree that widespread testing is essential to any reopening plan.

“Additionally, cases continue to increase – for example, last week Tarrant County reported a weekly high number of nearly 800 new cases. Statewide, we saw a day-to-day jump of 967 cases this weekend, one of the highest ever. The data directly contradicts what Gov. Abbott is saying, which causes great concern. An incremental approach makes some sense, but until we have proven additional testing capacity and an actual downward trajectory in new cases, the plan is not actually based on data or science.”

“Finally, the Governor said very little about what workers can do when they go back to work. For example – will they get sick days or workers compensation if they contract COVID-19? Do we have enough PPE supplies for everyone going back to work?

“We still have more questions than answers, and the continued lack of transparency and accuracy in communicating data should be of great concern for every Texan.”