Evers: You don’t need a permit or letter to be out of your home during ‘Safer at Home’ order
MADISON, Wis. — After ordering the month-long “Safer at Home” order beginning Wednesday in Wisconsin, the governor clarified that residents would still be able to move freely.
Gov. Tony Evers’ order, signed also by state Department of Health Services Secretary-Designee Andrea Palm on Tuesday, orders non-essential businesses to close, prohibits gatherings of any size and places new restrictions on travel across the state in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
“Folks do not need special permissions to leave their homes,” Evers clarified to reporters in a news conference. “You can still go outdoors, walk your dogs, go to the doctor, go to the pharmacist, and (get) groceries and get all the supplies that your need.”
He said people should limit their interactions to be with the same small number of people, and there should not be pot lucks, playdates or dinner parties. Evers also reiterated what other area and country leaders have said about bulk-buying at grocery stores amid the pandemic, saying no one will need to accumulate weeks-worth of goods. People will still be able to get to the store and get what they need.
“No need to run to the grocery store to hoard food,” Evers said. “Healthcare operations, grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, banks, critical infrastructure, and businesses that ship and deliver groceries and foods and goods directly to residents, among others, will continue to stay open.”
Outlined in the 16-page order are numerous exceptions, as well as some guidance on what, amid the closures, constitutes essential business, another daylong source of confusion between when Evers announced the coming order Monday and provided the details Tuesday. in the order, as well as referencing the Department of Homeland Security’s list of essential business provided by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.
Officials said the order was designed to severely curtail movement around the state and force people to stay at home.
“Our experts are comparing our data to the Wuhan and Italy experiences to predict what is likely to happen in Wisconsin,” Palm said. “And if we continue on our current path without implementing Safer At Home to flatten the curve, the models show us that we would likely have 22,000 Wisconsinites who are positive for COVID-19 by April 8, and an estimated 440 to 1,500 deaths.”
On Tuesday, state health officials said the number of positive coronavirus cases in Wisconsin was up to 514. The first positive cases of the coronavirus in Grant and Monroe counties were also reported Tuesday.
The order says people who violate it could face 30 days in jail and a $250 fine. The Safer at Home order runs until April 24.
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