Protesters converge on the Missouri Capitol and Governor’s Mansion

Joplin Area Coronavirus

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Protesters converge on the Missouri Capitol calling on Governor Mike Parson to lift the existing stay at home order.

Demonstrators also marched to the Governor’s Mansion.

Demonstrators say the shut downs have been devastating on the economy and believe the state has gone too far in its effort to stop the spread of covid-19.

Protesters gathered in front of the capitol and held signs they hope will send a message to Governor Mike Parson and his administration.

Debra Kohl, Demonstrator, said, “Governor Parson needs to rescind the emergency order. We are Americans we are smart we are clever we are capable we can figure out a way to protect those that are vulnerable and let the rest of America go back to work because you know what essential? A paycheck to feed my family.”

One of the lawmakers joining the demonstration was Rep. Jim Neely. He’s a physician and is challenging the Governor in the August primary.

Rep. Jim Neely, (R) Cameron, said, “I think it’s another message for decision-makers to say you know what let’s get back to work.”

Gov. Parson, said, “We announced last week we were going to open up the state so I mean I get em protesting today and that’s fine. They have every right to do that but you know what we’re asking people all along is to stay home that’s what we’re simply doing. Going with the guidelines of the state“

Governor Parson also described in more detail his plans for re-opening the state on May 4th.

“We still got to deal with things like the nursing homes we got a look at things where there’s highs risk, you still got casinos we are part of discussing those types, a majority of the businesses especially the service area whether that’s restaurants whether that’s beauticians barbershops whether it’s box stores will all be all I’ll be open in our guidance. We will give them the opportunity to open.”

The Governor said local counties could still leave their restrictions in place.

It’s those restrictions some say are doing more harm than good.

Josh Schisler, Reopen Missouri Organizer, said “There are other people that are vulnerable as well obviously people who live paycheck to paycheck people who have lost their jobs. Parents whose mental health is wearing thin they have no certainty about their future and they’re stuck at home with kids that they’re used to dealing with.”

Lawmakers are scheduled to return to the capitol next week to begin work on next year’s budget.

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