‘Stay at home’ order issued by Gov. Edwards extended through April

‘Stay at home’ order issued by Gov. Edwards extended through April
La. Gov. John Bel Edwards issued a statewide "stay at home" order on Sunday, March 22 that is in effect through the end of April. (Source: Lester Duhe'/WAFB-TV)

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Governor John Bel Edwards has extended the stay-at-home order for Louisiana residents through the end of April.

He announced this during a press conference Thursday, April 2. Residents should stay at home unless going out for essential tasks, including trips to the grocery store and pharmacy.

The updated proclamation unites several proclamations the Governor issued in March, extending them to April 30. The governor’s office says a separate order relating to unemployment is forthcoming. Guidelines for funeral services and licensure for healthcare workers were already extended to April 30 in the proclamation that was previously issued.

“It is absolutely critical that each Louisianan take this Stay at Home order seriously. Act as if your life depends on it, because it does. We have seen federal modeling data that shows that Louisiana could see more than 1,800 deaths by August. It doesn’t have to be that way. By working together, we can help flatten the curve in Louisiana, but we need all of our people to comply with the order,” Gov. Edwards said. “The order means you still cannot gather in groups of more than ten people. Frankly, you shouldn’t be gathering in groups at all. I’d love to see that Louisiana ingenuity put to use in finding ways to connect without being physically together. We all need to stay at home, stop the spread, and save lives.”

The following businesses shall remain closed to the public:

  • 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, casinos, video poker establishments, movie theaters, bowling alleys, bars, 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, fitness centers, gyms, 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 CISA guidelines.

Businesses closed to the public pursuant to this provision shall not be prohibited from conducting necessary activities such as payroll, cleaning services, maintenance, or upkeep as necessary.

UPDATED COMMUNICATIONS RESOURCES:

As Gov. Edwards extends the time for the Stay at Home order, Louisianans can get updates directly from the governor in two new ways:

  • To get texts from the governor’s office text LACOVID to 67283
  • Visit coronavirus.la.gov, which hosts all news about the COVID-19 response in Louisiana

In addition, the Governor’s Office shares information on its Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts and on its website, gov.louisiana.gov. Members of the public with general questions can also call 211.

What you CAN’T do

  • Don’t go to work unless you are providing essential services
  • Don’t visit friends and family if there is no urgent need
  • Don’t get closer than six feet away from others when you go out
  • Don’t gather in groups of more than 10
  • Don’t visit loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, or other residential care facility

What you CAN do

  • Go to the grocery store or pharmacy
  • Go to medical appointments after checking with your healthcare provider first
  • Go to restaurants for take-out, delivery, or drive-thru
  • Care for a family member or friend
  • Go outside (keep six feet between you and others)

From major hurricanes to massive flooding, Louisiana has seen many tragedies in its history. However, the governor pointed out there’s a big difference this time around.

“In this case, this fight is taking place simultaneously all across the country. And so, from where are we going to get more doctors and nurses? I can’t put out a request from other states for two million masks. I can’t, all of a sudden, go out and buy 5,000 ventilators. That’s what makes this very very tough,” the governor noted.

The governor says daycares will be allowed to remain open for now to allow for a place for children of those essential workers in the state. He also advised people to only buy one week’s worth of groceries at a time. He’s discouraging shoppers from “hoarding” groceries so there will be enough for everyone to get the things they need.

The governor also says there are no current plans to institute a statewide curfew. He says officials in each parish have the authority to issue curfews if they deem them necessary.

RELATED>>> Curfews issued in La. during COVID-19 pandemic

Meanwhile over at the Albertsons on Government Street in Baton Rouge, gloves seem to be the new fashion statement for grocery shopping.

Governor stresses stocking for the week but not hoarding after declaring stay at home order

“Got some okra and tomatoes for the house. I’m going to do a little grilling, do a little sauteing,” said Korey Miller, a shopper.

“Fruits and vegetables, and chicken and frozen dinners,” said Kelly Field, a shopper.

Since grocery stores are exempt from the order, officials say there is no need for shoppers to rush out and hoard groceries, or to buy more than needed to last a week.

"Please buy one weeks worth of groceries at a time,” said Edwards.

People shared different opinions on the governor’s decision for the order.

“Yes, I think it may be the best call for all of us. To keep it [virus] contained better by people staying at home,” said Marjoe Holmes.

“Soap and water actually kills this virus. So we can do common sense things without shutting down the economy at the same process,” said Field.

“You know, be respectable of what the law of the land is saying, and God is going to take care of the rest,” said Davis.

“It's a good thing as long as you can go to the essential places,” said Richard Johnson, a shopper.

However one shopper who says she owns a hair salon claimed she’ll now be forced to close.

“Not going to get to make as much money as I used to make. I'm just going to go back to the shop whenever I’m allowed to go back,” said Kirkisha Noel.

Alcohol is still a part of the grocery shopping, so shoppers can still buy liquor in Louisiana.

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