Gov. Edwards issues stay at home order in response to COVID-19 in Louisiana

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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has issued a statewide “stay at home” order effective at 5 p.m. Monday because of the threat of the novel coronavirus.

The stay at home order will be in place through April 12th.

Grocery stores will stay open and active. He says there is no need to hoard. Please only buy supplies for the week, he asks.

Here is what you can and should not do during the stay at home order.

“In Louisiana we have taken aggressive measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and flatten the curve; however, this is not enough. As our number of cases continue to grow, I am directing all Louisianans to stay at home unless it is absolutely necessary for you to leave. I am implementing this measure to help prevent you from becoming infected or infecting someone else. People can leave their homes to do essential things like buying groceries or food, pick up medicine or go to work only if their job is essential. If you have to go out, make sure you practice social distancing measures and keep 6 feet between you and the people around you. People are encouraged to go outside and to stay active during this time, as long as they practice social distancing when they are around their neighbors,” Gov. Edwards said. “This order is not something I take lightly, but it is necessary to protect the health, safety and well-being of our people, our communities and our way of life.”

The order is set to expire at the end of the night on Sunday, April 12. The Governor will re-evaluate the need for the statewide Stay at Home order and other mitigation measures currently in place to determine if they need to be extended beyond April 12.

The Governor previously ordered all K-12 public schools, casinos, bars movie theatres, gyms and fitness centers closed and restricted restaurants to take-out, drive-through and delivery orders only. He has also moved the state’s April 4 elections and limited crowd size.

For businesses, the new Stay at Home order has limits on the following:

All places of public amusement, whether indoors or outdoors, including but not limited to, locations with amusement rides, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, trampoline parks, aquariums, zoos, museums, arcades, fairs, pool halls, children’s play centers, playgrounds, theme parks, any theaters, concert and music halls, adult entertainment venues, racetracks, and other similar businesses.
All personal care and grooming businesses, including but not limited to, barber shops, beauty salons, nail salons, spas, massage parlors, tattoo parlors, and other similar businesses.

All malls, except for stores in a mall that have a direct outdoor entrance and exit that provide essential services and products as provided by the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) guidelines.
Businesses closed to the public as listed in the order can conduct necessary activities such as payroll, cleaning services, maintenance or upkeep as necessary.

Any business not covered by the guidance from the CISA discussed in Section 3 of the order and not ordered to temporarily close must reduce operations to continue with minimum contact with members of the public and essential employees, while requiring proper social distancing, adhering to the 10-person limitation on gathering size.

Early learning centers and child care facilities adhering to the guidance issued by the Louisiana Department of Education and Office of Public Health may continue to operate.

Examples of Essential Worker Functions under the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) guidelines include:

Healthcare workers and caregivers
Mental health and Social Service workers
Pharmacy employees
Workers supporting groceries, pharmacies and other retail sales of food and beverage products
Restaurant carryout and quick-serve food operations and food delivery employees
Farm workers
Electricity and Utility Industry Employees
Critical Manufacturing Employees (medical supply chains, energy, transportation, food, chemicals)
Petroleum, Natural and Propane Gas Workers
Transportation and Logistics Workers
Communications and Information Technology Employees
Financial Services and Banking Industry Employees

Members of the public will still be allowed to go to grocery stores and pharmacies to pick up food, medicine and necessary supplies, go to their essential jobs and to go outside for exercise and fresh air. When leaving their home, people should practice social distancing.

Louisiana's Growth Rate and Trajectory

Governor Edwards says Louisiana had the fastest growth rate in the world over the first 13 days of reporting COVID-19 cases. Louisiana's trajectory currently matches that of Italy. (See the graphics below.) Of all states in the U.S., Edwards says Louisiana has the 3rd highest number of cases per capita.

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