First lady Melania Trump is announcing the cancellation of the White House’s annual Easter Egg Roll.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham took to Twitter to share the announcement on Monday, citing concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.
“Out of an abundance of caution and in accordance with the National Emergency Declaration concerning the COVID-19, the Office of the First Lady is announcing that this year’s White House Easter Egg Roll has been canceled,” Grisham tweeted.
Out of an abundance of caution and in accordance with the National Emergency Declaration concerning the COVID-19, the Office of the First Lady is announcing that this year’s White House Easter Egg Roll has been canceled. pic.twitter.com/Qr8VdWj6Bw— Kayleigh McEnany (@PressSec) March 16, 2020
Melania Trump also offered a statement about the decision. Although she regrets the cancellation, as she says, health and safety are top priority and in the best interest of the American people.
“The health and safety of all Americans must be the first priority, especially right now,” Melania Trump said in a statement. “I deeply regret this cancellation, but we need to make difficult decisions in the short-term to ensure a healthy country for the long-term.”
The announcement follows a string of reports about other closures and event cancellations around the Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia areas. Public schools have been shut down for the at least two weeks amid coronavirus concerns.
On Friday, President Donald Trump declared a national state of emergency. At the time, the president invoked the Stafford Act to grant power to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in order to quickly offer assistance to states and municipalities at the center of the crisis.
The president previously said on March 12, “We have very strong emergency powers under the Stafford Act. I have it memorized, practically, as to the powers in that act. And if I need to do something, I’ll do it. I have the right to do a lot of things that people don’t even know about.”
On Sunday night, —after the CDC recommended gathering sizes be reduced to less than 50 people for the next eight weeks— D.C. announced a new policy shutting down clubs and restricting bar seating. The guidelines also require all tables and booths to be at least six feet apart. Additionally, restaurants have expanded their delivery and takeout options.