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Local Reactions To Gov. Baker's Latest COVID-19 Restrictions25:24
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Gov. Charlie Baker finishes up his written remarks as he speaks to the media on the Covid-19 situation in Mass. on Dec. 22. (Stuart Cahill/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via pool)
Gov. Charlie Baker finishes up his written remarks as he speaks to the media on the Covid-19 situation in Mass. on Dec. 22. (Stuart Cahill/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via pool)

Effective Dec. 26, Gov. Baker will cap foot traffic at most businesses and religious services to 25%. Gatherings will also be limited to 10 people indoors, and 25 people outdoors.

Dr. Ashish Jha, a health policy researcher and dean of the Brown University School of Public Health, joined us to examine the timing and degree of the new measures.

While he commended the governor for taking these steps, Jha said the climb in coronavirus case numbers in Massachusetts could have been avoided had the state acted sooner. He acknowledged there are consequences to further restricting businesses at a time when people who lose their jobs don't have any recourse, but he said as the health crisis worsens, this scenario becomes less of a trade off.

"When public health gets really bad, when your hospitals get truly really overwhelmed, the economy begins to suffer substantially," Jha said. "You can keep things open, but people will stop engaging in economic activity.

"And the key is to act before you get there, because if you wait to act until you're there," he added, "you've both wrecked your economy and have had a lot of lives lost."

How are everyday people in the commonwealth reacting to the latest restrictions? To find out, we turn to two analysts and take listener calls.

Michael Curry, incoming CEO of the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers and a member of the national NAACP Board of Directors, and Ed Lyons, a Massachusetts Republican activist and political writer, joined Radio Boston.

This segment aired on December 23, 2020.

Paris Alston Twitter Producer, Radio Boston
Paris Alston is a producer for Radio Boston and WBUR's host of the Consider This podcast.

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Jamie Bologna Twitter Producer/Director, Radio Boston
Jamie Bologna is producer and director of Radio Boston.

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Tiziana Dearing Twitter Host, Radio Boston
Tiziana Dearing is the host of Radio Boston.

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