On Wednesday Florida’s newly appointed Surgeon General and secretary of Florida’s Department of Health, Dr. Joseph Ladapo, issued a new rule laying out a dangerous new COVID-19 quarantine policy for schools across the state. The new rule allows students who have been exposed to someone with the disease to still come to school and participate in school activities without even being tested as long as they don’t present symptoms.
The CDC says people who have become infected can spread the virus as long as two days before presenting symptoms, and recommends a 14-day quarantine for exposed students, or at least seven days away from campus if they test negative for COVID.
In reaction to this new rule, Florida Democratic Party Chair Manny Diaz issued the following statement:
“The new rules signed yesterday by Florida’s newly appointed anti-vaxx, anti-mask Surgeon General represent a clear continuation of the DeSantis administration’s war on scientific consensus, not to mention common sense. Allowing children to continue going to school even after being exposed to someone who has tested positive for the coronavirus as long as they are asymptomatic directly contradicts the recommendations of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Ron DeSantis is not interested in slowing down the rate of COVID infections in Florida, that much is clear. His only motivation is to cater to a radical pandemic-denialist, anti-vaccine, anti-masking constituency within his own party, and he has hand picked a new Surgeon General who will buck the overwhelming scientific consensus to validate and enforce his warped, ideologically distorted agenda. This war on science has lost us more than 50,000 Floridians. This insanity must stop.
“I call upon the Governor to set aside his political ambitions for once and listen to the experts. Follow the science and save lives, Governor DeSantis. Your job is to look out for the health and welfare of the people of our state, not to be in perennial campaign mode or to cynically coddle a radical yet politically convenient group of voters within your own party.”