Resiliency Defines the Lone Star State

Through public and private cooperation in the name of public health, Texas is on its way to a swift rebound from COVID-19

By Governor Greg Abbott

The state of Texas is strong; our people, resilient.
As we’ve seen in years past, when tested by fire, flood, or hurricane, Texans respond with resilience and calm resolve. And just as we overcame those challenges, we will overcome this health emergency.

When neighbors help neighbors, our resilience is redoubled. And while we are battling a colossal challenge in COVID-19 — an invisible enemy that has tested our lives and our livelihoods — overcoming challenges is who we are as Texans and as Americans.

Working together, while adhering to safe standards, we are beginning to open Texas and put Texans back to work.

Slowing the spread, serving communities

While immediately mobilizing state resources, activating the state’s emergency response plans, and leveraging all federal resources to slow the spread of the coronavirus in Texas, it is because of the people of the Lone Star State that we are succeeding.

Staying home and following social distancing and recommended health practices is working. We are saving lives. That is the bottom line. By continuing to work together while remaining apart, we will save even more lives — and focus even more on fueling our resilient economy to help lift every Texas family. Though the cost has been high for families and businesses, and each life lost cuts deeply, we have learned in past disasters that from suffering comes perseverance, from perseverance comes character, and from character, hope.

I have heard from so many individuals, organizations, and community groups who are stepping up, innovating and
serving their fellow Texans. I thank them all. And I look forward to shaking their hands once we are victorious in this battle.
I’d also like to thank the great business leaders in Texas who have demonstrated an unmatched commitment to serving their
community. From the biggest global brands and Fortune 500s headquartered here in the Lone Star State to so many small businesses and innovative entrepreneurs, we are seeing the incredible can-do spirit of Texas.

This list of all would be bigger than Texas itself, but among the leading employers who are making a difference across Texas: Amazon, Randalls, and H-E-B are hiring more Texans and increasing hourly wages to ensure Texas families have access to
the groceries and supplies they need. H-E-B is also joining Dell, ExxonMobil, Frost Bank, USAA, Walmart, and so many other corporate citizens in donating food and millions in funds to food banks, nonprofits, and organizations helping to meet community needs. Home Depot, NRG, and Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas are ensuring healthcare workers and first responders have the safety, personal protection, and emergency equipment needed. AT&T,

Comcast, Spectrum, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon are all working to keep Texans and Americans connected. American Airlines is waiving change fees for purchased travel, and Southwest Airlines is offering to transport medical workers to Texas. Valero Energy has retooled ethanol operations to produce hand sanitizer in bulk; Apple is designing and producing face masks; and Walgreens is opening their store lots for drive-through coronavirus testing.

Then there are the unnamed but heroic small business owners who have made hard decisions to do the right thing — to alter their businesses entirely to produce essential foods and protective equipment; to modify their business practices to protect their employees and their customers; and to continue paying employees because they cannot work for reasons beyond their control.

Reopening Texas

We have shown that Texas can continue our efforts to contain COVID-19 while also adhering to safe standards that will allow us to get back to work. To that end, I established the Governor’s Strike Force to Open Texas.

The Strike Force to Open Texas brings together nationally recognized medical experts with public- and private-sector leaders to achieve this mission.

The Chief Medical Advisors are working alongside a Special Advisory Council who are sharing innovative ideas to help businesses strategically reopen while containing the spread
of COVID-19. The council consists of 39 business leaders representing the state’s regions and industries. The advisory council

is collaborating with working groups to devise strategies, statewide standards, and appropriate timeframes to open all business sectors in the Lone Star State.

Looking ahead

What makes Texas a great place to live, work, and do business has not changed: our young, growing workforce more than 14 million strong; our central location and strong infrastructure; our reasonable regulatory climate and pro-business attitude.

The qualities that made us a great place before, and the nation’s leader in job creation, are still here and still strong — and will make us great again.

I have faith in the people of Texas and in the people of our great nation. Let’s get to work.

Greg Abbott is the 48th Governor of the State of Texas. He continues to build on his long record as a conservative leader who fights to preserve Texas values like faith, family and freedom.