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Gov. DeWine pushing for changes to racial inequality in health amid COVID-19

While the coronavirus was the topic of Friday’s statehouse briefing, Governor Mike DeWine took a moment to address the protest happening outside and how the coronavirus has highlighted racial disparities in health.

DeWine said he is working with other lawmakers to make testing a priority in minority neighborhoods with the help of Ohio’s National Guard, and that Dr. Amy Acton has created a position in the Department of Health to work specifically on health inequality.

DeWine also referenced data that has shown the virus has hit Central Ohio’s Hispanic and black communities harder than others; as past data has shown for other illnesses.

“If you are a black baby, your odds are three times as much that you’re not gonna make it,” DeWine said. “That should shock all of us. That should anger all of us, but what we should do is we can talk about. Talking is important.”

Earlier this week, DeWine said he was going to work with the general assembly. Friday, he reiterated he has specific reforms he plans to bring up to the assembly while focusing on police training, oversight, and accountability.

He says those conversations will be happening through the weekend when more protests are scheduled.