US needs to be ‘disciplined’ for coronavirus reopenings to be successful: Labor secretary

US labor secretary: Need to be ‘careful’ about uptick in coronavirus cases

U.S. Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia argues there’s a lot of room to put people back to work even as certain reopenings pause.

Americans must be "disciplined" for coronavirus reopenings to be successful, Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia said on Monday.

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"The rise in cases we’re seeing in some of the states … I think it’s a message to the rest of the country," Scalia told "Mornings with Maria." "We do have to be careful. We do have to be disciplined. We can reopen safely. But it does get harder if people just throw all caution to the wind."

In this June 3, 2020 file photo, a Universal Studios employee takes the temperature of a guest entering the theme park in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

Many employees in the health care and local government sectors will be able to get back to work soon despite pauses on coronavirus reopenings, Scalia said. The health care sector lost more than 1.5 million jobs but approximately 360,000 jobs were restored in June, Scalia said.

"We still have 900,000 fewer people employed in that sector than we did in February," he said. "Local government numbers are down there, too. We can put people back there. So I think there’s a lot of room to put people back to work even as we do pause certain types of reopenings like restaurants. I think most workplaces are safe."

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New Jersey and parts of New York have delayed reopening indoor dining due to coronavirus concerns.

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