"In todayís environment, Americans need their
sports. Itís time to reopen the economy and itís time we get our
professional athletes back to work," Wolf said in a statement
issued by the department announcing he had signed an order for
President Donald Trump's administration is pushing to reopen the
U.S. economy after drastic measures to combat the pandemic this
year put tens of millions of people out of work.
Major U.S. professional sports were shut down as part of the
effort to tackle COVID-19, the respiratory disease cause by the
coronavirus which has killed more than 94,000 people and
infected 1.57 million in the United States.
In its response to the epidemic, the Trump administration has
also imposed bans on entry of travelers from China, where the
epidemic started, as well as Iran and much of Europe.
Besides the athletes, the exemption applies to the sporting
leagues' essential staff, spouses and dependents, the statement
The sports covered by the exemption include Major League
Baseball, the National Basketball Association, the Women's
National Basketball Association, the Professional Golfers'
Association Tour, the Ladies Professional Golf Association Tour,
the National Hockey League, the Association of Tennis
Professionals, and the Women's Tennis Association.
(Reporting by Mohammad Zargham; Editing by Leslie Adler and
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