ATLANTA, GA — As of Friday at 6 p.m. all of Georgia is being placed under a shelter in place order designed to slow the spread of the new coronavirus pandemic. The order is scheduled to last at least through midnight on Monday, April 13.
Under the order, all non-essential businesses are closed and residents who don't work at those essential businesses must remain at home. (Read the full text of the order below.)
Anyone who violates the shelter in place order can receive a misdemeanor, though the governor says most people will simply receive warnings and will only be charged if they refuse to shelter in place. However, Kemp has signed an executive order authorizing county sheriffs and deputies to enforce the shelter in place order if necessary, according to 13WMAZ. Before the order could only be enforced by the Georgia Department of National Resources or State Patrol troopers.
Residents then can only leave their homes if they're doing something essential like:
Getting important supplies, grocery shopping or getting food
Visiting a doctor or a pharmacist for medical care
Leaving to exercise, jog or walk, but only if you keep the minimum 6 feet from everyone else as part of safe social distancing.
As for meetups or social events: they're mostly forbidden, too. Gatherings of over 10 people are banned unless there is enough space that each person can keep 6 feet or more from everyone else at all times. Local governments are also expected to follow this rule during any meetings they may hold.
That same ban also applies to church services and funerals: they are still permitted if there are less than 10 people present, but any more and there needs to be ample space for safe social distancing.
The governor's office says the key here is to keep everyone in their house as much as possible to stop transmissions of the coronavirus, but that they do understand that people will need to leave to get supplies or in emergency situations.
My top priority is keeping Georgians safe and healthy. This executive order will help stop the spread of COVID-19 and flatten the curve.Read the order: https://t.co/ueMxtsJTKmRead more guidance: https://t.co/p7qclV3QZAWatch here: https://t.co/M4I4BVxchk
— Governor Brian P. Kemp (@GovKemp) April 2, 2020
Under the order, the following types of businesses are closed to customers statewide:
Bars and nightclubs
Gyms and fitness centers
Theaters and performance venues
Restaurants can still offer take-out or curbside pick-up of food. Dine in-services at care facilities and hospitals are still allowed.
Tattoo parlors, beauty salons, and barber shops
Get the latest updates on the new coronavirus in Georgia as they happen. Sign up for free news alerts and a newsletter in your Patch town.
The entirety of the governor's order can be read below:
Further guidance from the governor's office for residents and business owners can be found here: