May 6, 2020

County Executive announces plans to begin phase one on May 11

Jackson Count Executive Frank White, Jr

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Jackson County Executive Frank White, Jr. today is announcing phase one guidelines of the Jackson County Recovery Plan, which is planned to begin on May 11 in alignment with the Unified Government of Wyandotte County/KCK and Johnson County, KS.

The Jackson County Health Department, under the leadership of Director Bridgette Shaffer, MPH, has prepared the phased-approach recovery plan that is focused on protecting the health and safety of residents, while beginning a safe and sensible path to economic recovery for all of Jackson County.

“Families, workers and businesses have made difficult sacrifices, but their cooperation has made it possible for us to develop a path to move forward,” said Jackson County Executive Frank White, Jr. “Far too many lives have been lost to this virus and we remain committed to protecting public health as we reopen slowly and safely. I appreciate the input and support of our communities during this unprecedented and deadly pandemic. The road ahead will have its challenges, but I am confident that if we stick together, we can overcome any obstacles that lie ahead.”

Under phase one, all businesses deemed essential during the county’s stay-at-home order will be allowed to remain open. In addition, most retail stores, personal service providers, restaurants and bars selling food will be allowed to reopen for business provided they follow the social-distancing guidelines and capacity limitations provided. Gatherings, of up to 10 people, will be allowed to resume, but social-distancing guidelines must be followed. In addition, certain businesses and activities including entertainment venues, gyms/fitness centers, and outdoor playgrounds shall remain closed.

The County strongly recommends that all residents continue social-distancing protocols, specifically, encouraging seniors and vulnerable populations to stay at home, working remotely if possible, and wearing a mask or face covering when in public.

“Every individual has a personal responsibility to stay safe and protect themselves, their neighbors, employees and customers. When we stop taking this virus seriously, we will be right back where we started or worse,” said Jackson County Health Department Director Bridgette Shaffer, MPH. “Social distancing has proven to be effective in our efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 and we urge people to follow our guidance, knowing that their actions will determine how we progress through this recovery process.”

A public survey issued by Jackson County on Friday, May 1 has so far, resulted in more than 9,000 responses and that feedback has been instrumental in the development of the County’s phase one plan. Additionally, here are some of the comments survey respondents shared when asked what steps they would like to see the County take to help them feel safe:

  • “Open in phases, require face mask, ensure that health care workers and first responders have adequate PPE.”
  • “Allow us to make our own decisions. Stop mandating stay at homes and business closures”
  • “No there is nothing you can do except keep everything closed please.”
  • “Encourage those who don’t feel safe to stay home, but we need to open our businesses.”
  • “Enforcement of social distancing, mask wearing & reducing maximum capacity”
  • “Robust contract tracing and tracking, readily available testing for all citizens.”
  • “No more then 25% capacity for at least one month if not two”
  • “Do not open too quickly. As a healthcare provider it is upsetting that we are quickly opening that there will be a surge in cases.”
  • “Would like to see closures again if we start to see an increase in positive cases again. I’d prefer to not reopen until we have significant and steady decline in cases.”
  • “Monitor compliance and provide education in social media and signage.”

The survey will remain available until noon Friday, May 8. Individuals can go to to take the survey. Additionally, the attached QR Code can be scanned on smart devices for easy mobile access.  The County will share the final results of the survey on its website and social media platforms after it is concluded.

Jackson County’s Recovery Plan can be found online by visiting and Residents and businesses with questions should call (816) 404-9883 or email