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Fried Launches 'Be Smart Florida' Campaign To Fight COVID-19

Steve Cannon
AP Photo

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is launching a new campaign aimed at defeating COVID-19. Fried introduced the new initiative, called ‘Be Smart Florida,” Monday morning.

“S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym that stands for; S - social distance, M - mask up, A - avoid large crowds, R - remember to wash your hands, and T - throw away disposable items like gloves, masks, and wipes," said Fried.

Fried says these are proven steps that have helped reduce the spread of COVID-19. She says the campaign will feature videos from Florida athletes, local leaders, and members of Congress. It comes just after Governor Ron DeSantis announced an initiative Friday to unite Floridians in the fight against COVID-19.

Fried, the only Democratic member of the Florida Cabinet, says her initiative isn’t a criticism of the Republican governor’s ‘One Goal One Florida’ campaign.

“I have not seen the Governor’s video; from my understanding, it was just a video on Friday," said Fried. "Ours is multi-dimensional, multi-channels from PSA announcements to videos, to toolkits, and certainly would love everyone’s voice united on this and certainly would welcome the governor to create one of these videos himself so that we are speaking in one voice.”

Fried’s push includes practicing proper hygiene, social distancing, and wear masks. Fried says when it comes to moving into the next phase of reopening there should be a pause. She also says leaders should consider scaling back to things like outdoor seating only or more limited capacity at restaurants.

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Blaise Gainey is a Multimedia Reporter for WFSU News. Blaise hails from Windermere, Florida. He graduated from The School of Journalism at the Florida A&M University. He formerly worked for The Florida Channel, WTXL-TV, and before graduating interned with WFSU News. He is excited to return to the newsroom. In his spare time he enjoys watching sports, Netflix, outdoor activities and anything involving his daughter.