Gov. Roy Cooper has just signed a stay-at-home order for North Carolina.
Enforcement will begin on Monday at 5 p.m., but Cooper said at a news briefing that he encourages residents to start following the order immediately.
This announcement closely follows many counties in the state declaring their own stay-at-home orders, including Orange County. Cooper said for counties that already have an order in place, the more restrictive order applies.
You don't have to stock up on food or rush to the grocery store, though.
The stay-at-home order directs residents to stay at home unless they have to leave for essential reasons. These reasons include:
- Going to a job
- Getting food
- Getting medicine
- Exercising outdoors
- Helping someone
The order also bans gatherings of more than ten people and directs everyone to stay at least six feet away from each other.
Cooper said he believes this order is necessary because N.C. is considered by the CDC to have “widespread transmission,” meaning people are sick with coronavirus and don’t know how they got it.
As of today, the state has confirmed 763 cases and 3 deaths across 60 counties.
“It is truly a matter of life and death,” Cooper said.
The order allows essential services to continue, and directs businesses that need to stay open to use a strong social distancing policy.
Cooper said over 200,000 unemployment claims have been filed in the state, and the first COVID-19 unemployment benefits will be paid early next week.
“I’m fighting for federal and state help for workers, their families and businesses,” Cooper said. “We will not forget those who have lost their livelihoods in this crisis.”
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